Child asthma missed by lung function test

GPs should use a beneficial response to medication test instead of lung function to diagnose asthma in pre-school children.

Chairman of the General Practice Airways Group (GPIAG) and Somerset GP Dr Steve Holmes, said: 'Taking a good history of the child and testing for a beneficial response to medication are the main treatments used by GPs to successfully diagnose asthma in young children.'

A marked improvement of symptoms and recurrence of asthma when the treatment with medication is stopped is supportive of an asthma diagnosis.

However, diagnosing asthma  in pre-school children remains one of the most common problem areas in asthma treatment, said Dr Holmes.

'It is important to pick up the condition as early as possible but not to overtreat because a lot of children will present with wheeze,' he said.

This follows concerns that pre-school children with asthma risk are not being diagnosed if the diagnosis is based on lung function measurements.

sanjay.tandy@haymarket.com  

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register

Already registered?

Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus