Tobacco smoking can significantly impact a patient with asthma. Unfortunately an unexpectedly high number of patients with asthma are active smokers.


Impact of tobacco smoke on a patient with asthma:

(1) direct irritant effect on hyperresponsive bronchial mucosa

(2) exposure to increased environmental dust (from tobacco ash)

(3) increased risk for respiratory infections

(4) increased airway inflammation


Exposure to tobacco smoke is an important cause for asthma exacerbations.


Active smokers are at increased risk for:

(1) chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)

(2) lung and other cancers

(3) reduced sensitivity to inhaled corticosteroids



(1) Anyone with asthma who smokes should stop.

(2) People with asthma should avoid environments with tobacco smoke.

(3) Parents of a child with asthma should avoid smoking where the child may be exposed to the smoke.

(4) People who smoke should try to do so where they will not impact someone with asthma.


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