Since asthma is one of the most common chronic diseases in childhood, the doctor’s ability to objectively diagnose asthma is crucial. This is important so the asthma doctor can appropriately select the right treatment regimen for your child with asthma.
The National Asthma Education and Prevention Program’s Expert Panel Report includes the use of spirometry (a breathing test that requires effort and cooperation from the patient) to assess the child’s lung function 5 years and up. One survey showed that only 1 in 5 medical practitioners use spirometry in the diagnoses of asthma for children! Reasons for this may be that there is difficulty in interpreting results of spirometry in younger children, and that younger children and handicapped children may not be able to do spirometry, as it requires lung maneuvers that are dependent on the child’s effort. This is where a new technology called impulse oscillometry (IOS) comes in. IOS is non-invasive, easy to perform, and requires minimal patient cooperation. IOS is a great way to assess lung function, especially in younger children with asthma. The correct management for asthma is dependent on accurate diagnosis and follow-up. It is important for the asthma doctor to be able to assess how the child is doing both subjectively as well as objectively to properly adjust the treatment regimen through time.
I recently joined Allergy and Asthma Associates of Southern California, and was excited and impressed that impulse oscillometry technology is available to patients here. Very few centers in the country have this technology, and many research studies have proven it useful as a breathing test. It is a great tool, especially for asthma management in younger children.
-by Faith Huang, M.D.
Allergy & Asthma Associates of Southern California provides relief from allergies, asthma, sinus problems, chronic cough and other related conditions. Dr. William E. Berger, Dr. Warner W. Carr, Dr. Mark S. Sugar, Dr. Christina D. Schwindt, and Dr. Faith R. Huang together with their staff specialize in allergy and immunology in Southern California.
If you or your child is suffering from asthma, please call us at (949) 364-2900 to schedule your appointment today. You can also use our online Request an Appointment form to schedule a future appointment.