Many Children With Asthma Use Their Inhalers Incorrectly, Leading To Serious Complications
29
August

By Adem Lewis / in , , , , , , , , , /


10-year-old Amanda Grabel’s asthma had gotten
so severe that it was life-threatening. Desperate for a solution, her parents took
her to several doctors, who kept writing more and more prescriptions. “It was very frustrating – they just kept
giving more medicine, more medicine, and none of it helped.” “She was afraid to go to sleep at night because
she was afraid she was going to die.” Finally, the Grabels came to Dr. BJ Lanser,
a specialist at National Jewish Health in Denver, who had a simple solution: it turns
out Amanda had the right medicine; she was just taking it wrong. “We see children who just don’t know how to
use it at all so they take breaths in a totally different way that doesn’t help get it into
the lungs, which is where the medicine needs to go.” In fact, Dr. Lanser says most children he
sees use inhalers incorrectly. He says the biggest mistake is not using a
spacer – without it, about 80% of the medicine settles in the mouth and never gets into the
lungs. Dr. Lanser says many children also don’t realize
that exhaling is just as important as inhaling. “Take some normal breaths and then a big deep
breath to fully exhale so you then have empty lungs to take a nice deep breath and get all
of your medicine in.” Other common mistakes involve how the inhaler
is positioned. Dr. Lanser says kids should stand up straight
when using inhalers with their head in a neutral position, not tipped back. Aim the inhaler at the back of the throat
and close the lips tightly around the mouthpiece to keep the medication from escaping. After learning the proper technique and practicing
it, Amanda perfected her techniques and is back to being herself. “I don’t have to worry about everything; I
feel like I don’t have asthma anymore. I do, but it feels like I don’t.” At National Jewish Health in Denver, this
is Clark Collin.


10 thoughts on “Many Children With Asthma Use Their Inhalers Incorrectly, Leading To Serious Complications

  1. I have to use a spacer who here has had the worst experience with asthma
    I needed oxygen treatment every minute almost spend the night in a hospital then having to deal with that plus allergies the sneezing and coughing at the same time is awful

  2. Broooo tell me why Texas Children's hospital told me to take 6 pumps of albuterol (I can't spell) every time I feel wheezing or I am going through an asthma attack.
    EXPLAIN PLS

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