Children ages 12-17, who have well-controlled asthma, are wanted in a clinical trial to study the effectiveness of mobile devices in an effort to determine the lowest dosage of medication needed to maintain control.
Asthma in children is the number one reason for school absences and hospital emergency department visits. At Nemours, we treat nearly 30,000 children with asthma each year. Our teams of pediatric specialists can make an initial diagnosis of asthma and provide the care children need to successfully manage their symptoms.
Asthma is generally a chronic (long-term) disease that makes breathing difficult when parts of a child’s airway become swollen and inflamed, and may be clogged with thick mucus.
Making an initial diagnosis of asthma in children includes obtaining a complete medical and family history, and performing a comprehensive physical examination. Testing is individualized and may include a chest X-ray and pulmonary function testing to see how well the lungs are working, and allergy testing.
After the diagnosis is made, good childhood asthma care requires continuous effort at home and in school. We spend lots of time with children and families one-on-one and in groups to teach them about the disease and how to use their medications. Our primary goal is to minimize the symptoms of asthma and help children and families to reduce the number of times they’ll need to go to the hospital for emergency care.
The doctors, nurse practitioners, registered nurses, and respiratory therapists at Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children are a specially trained team to provide care and treatment for asthma in children. Our pulmonologists (lung specialists) can make an initial diagnosis of asthma, give children and families the tools they need to successfully manage the disease, and provide the care they need if they require hospitalization.
Although we work with children and families to avoid asthma emergencies, our Emergency Department has staff prepared to treat patients with all types of asthma attacks at any hour.
In the Emergency Department, or if your child requires a stay in the hospital, we have educational tools available at the bedside to help you and your child better understand the condition and how to manage it. Nemours’ KidsHealth and the GetWellNetwork have developed a 14-part series of 4- to 5-minute videos on asthma in children, covering topics from “What Is Asthma?” to “Asthma Triggers” to “Your Child’s Asthma Action Plan.”
An important part of our program involves detecting and treating under-diagnosed asthma in children, so a correct care plan can improve their quality of life. We strive to minimize the side effects of asthma medications, prescribing the smallest amount of medication needed to control symptoms and prevent asthma flare-ups. We will also address any underlying medical conditions that may contribute to asthma in your child.
For mild to moderate asthma in children, we work toward the goals of keeping them symptom free and able to participate in sports and other activities.
For children with moderate to severe asthma, our goals are to keep them out of the hospital and to help them be consistent in taking their medications and sticking to their personalized treatment plan (also known as an “asthma action plan”).
Communication is central to that process, and we work to build close relationships with our patients and families. All of your child’s Nemours caregivers, and many primary care doctors, will have “real-time” access to information about your child’s asthma management plan and any medical care your child receives through our electronic medical record system, NemoursOne.