DefinitionBy Mayo Clinic staff
With childhood asthma, the lungs and airways become easily inflamed when exposed to certain triggers, such as airborne pollen. In other cases, childhood asthma flares up with a cold or other respiratory infection. Childhood asthma can cause bothersome daily symptoms that interfere with play, sports, school and sleep. In some children, unmanaged asthma can cause dangerous asthma attacks.
Childhood asthma isn't a different disease from asthma in adults, but children do face unique challenges. Asthma in children is a leading cause of emergency department visits, hospitalizations and missed school days. Unfortunately, childhood asthma can't be cured, and symptoms may continue into adulthood. But with the right treatment, you and your child can keep symptoms under control and prevent damage to growing lungs.
- Kliegman RM, et al. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 19th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2011. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/208746819-6/0/1608/0.html. Accessed Nov. 27, 2012.
- Childhood asthma: Tips to remember. American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. http://www.aaaai.org/conditions-and-treatments/library/at-a-glance/childhood-asthma.aspx. Accessed Nov. 27, 2012.
- Expert panel report 3 (EPR-3): Guidelines for the diagnosis and management of asthma. Bethesda, Md.: National Institutes of Health. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/guidelines/asthma/06_sec3_comp3.pdf. Accessed Nov. 27, 2012.
- Krystofova J, et al. Bronchial asthma and obesity in childhood. Acta Medica. 2011;54:102.
- Hay WW, et al. Current Diagnosis & Treatment: Pediatrics. 20th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2011. http://www.accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=14. Accessed Nov. 27, 2012.
- Bacherier LB, et al. Diagnosis and management of early asthma in pre-school aged children. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. 2012;130:287.
- Childhood asthma. Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. http://www.aafa.org/print.cfm?id=8&sub=16&cont=44. Accessed Nov. 27, 2012.
- Young C. Avoiding asthma triggers: A primer for patients. Journal of the American Osteopathic Association. 2011;111:S30.
- Bukutu C, et al. Asthma: A review of complementary and alternative therapies. Pediatrics in Review. 2008;29:e44.
- Torres-Llenza V, et al. Use of complementary and alternative medicine in children with asthma. Canadian Respiratory Journal. 2010;17:183.
- Li JTC (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Nov. 29, 2012.