NOTES TAKEN BY C D GOLDBERG OF A LECTURE GIVEN BY PROFESSOR HEATHER ZAR @ UCT MEDICAL SCHOOL ON 13TH OCTOBER 2009, TITLED

: “CHRONIC ASTHMA IN CHILDREN – WHAT’S NEW!” 1. Asthma is increasing in South African children in the region of 18 to 20 % in children aged between 13 – 14 years of age, in both urban and rural populations. 2. Genetics, diet and living conditions such as overcrowding are etiological factors in asthma. 3. Questionnaires, videos have been developed and modified to meet current trends. 4. Despite the increase in asthma attacks, only one in five gets reported. 5. What’s new in the diagnosis of asthma is that there is a new classification that has been submitted to the SAMJ. 6. Levels of asthma control range from controlled, partially controlled to uncontrolled. 7. The Global Initiative for Asthma’s website is www.ginasthma.org 8. Controlled asthma – no symptoms and near normal lung function. 9. Questionnaire is available from Glaxo Smith Kline. 10. Allergens from house dust mites and pets are the most common causes, but many other allergens, such as pollen and moulds, can cause asthma. Some people with asthma have no obvious allergies. (www.ginasthma.org)

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11. 12. Therapy for asthma, is that inhaled therapy is preferable, such as metered dose inhaler (MDI) and spacer. 13. Other types of inhalers are used and also oral steroid preparations as well, if need be.

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