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67
Is it possible
to have
asthma
without
wheezing?
James T C Li, M
.
D
.
, Ph
.
D
.
While not all
unusual breathing
sounds are a
sign of asthma or
another underlying
health condition
that needs
treatment, see the
doctor to make
sure.
If you suspect you
or your child may
have asthma, see
a doctor to have it
checked out.
Early diagnosis
and treatment
can help prevent
asthma from
getting worse, and
can help you or
your child avoid
a bad asthma
attack.
Yes, it’s possible
to have asthma
without
wheezing.
Expert
Advice
A wheeze is a whistling sound
produced by air fowing through
a narrowed airway
.
Although
a wheeze occurs primarily on
exhaling, it can be heard on
inhaling as well
.
Wheezing
is a common sign of asthma,
particularly in children
.
However,
asthma doesn
'
t always produce a
wheeze you can hear
.
Instead, other
signs and symptoms of asthma
may be more prominent
.
Tese can
include
:
• Chest tightness
• Cough
• Shortness of breath
• Trouble breathing
Tese signs and symptoms of
asthma may get worse during
play or exercise
.
A cold or other
respiratory infection also can make
asthma symptoms more noticeable
.
When you see the doctor, be
prepared to answer very specifc
questions
.
When considering a
diagnosis, the doctor will want to
know as much as possible about
any unusual breathing sounds or
other possible signs of asthma
.
In older children and adults, lung
function tests can be used to make
an asthma diagnosis
.
Children
usually don
'
t develop the skills to
take these tests until they
'
re about
4 years old, so asthma diagnosis in
younger children is generally based
on what a parent notices and tells
the doctor
.
H