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How to manage asthma?

Q: My wife is 38 years old and mother of a daughter. She has asthma which started 10 years back. Now we live in a coastal area in eastern India. Normally she takes asthalin inhaler and during attacks seroflo and in case of acute attack, deriphylin injection. Should she withdraw the medication slowly in phases or it can be stopped suddenly? Does continuous use of steroids lead to resistance build up in the system?

A:1. People who suffer from asthma would need to continue the medication life long. But if your wifes condition is stable and she wishes to stop the drugs, I suggest gradual withdrawal in reducing doses over a few weeks, especially steroids. 2. Steroids used over long term can and do cause resistance needing increase in the dosage over time, in a greater proportion of patients. Moreover steroids used over long periods can cause serious side effects and one should therefore take the minimum effective dose. I suggest you consult your local chest physician.

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