The Role of Influenza Vaccination in Asthmatic Children
Asthma is the most occurring chronic disease in children. Asthma related genes and environmental factors play a role in the etiology. Nowadays, asthma is regarded as a chronic inflammatory disease of the airways instead of solely a reversible airway obstruction. Asthma is often diagnosed on specific symptoms such as chest tightness, wheezing, dyspnea, and coughing. It is likely that, rather than a single disease entity, asthma consists of related, partially overlapping syndromes. The first symptoms often are experienced before the age of 5. Children with the highest risk have a family history of atopy and/or asthma. Viral infections with symptoms of wheezing acquired in the first year of life may be associated with the risk of developing asthma later on . However, making the diagnosis with a reasonable certainty that is supported by spirometry is only possible from the age of 6 onward. More than 50% of children with a period of wheezing earlier on in life are not diagnosed as having asthma at the age of 6 .
The use of rescue and anti-inflammatory medication has largely altered the prospects of asthma patients and has improved their quality of life. Thus, nowadays, most asthma patients lead a normal life without restrictions. Disease control achieved by the asthmatics is an important predictor of the likelihood of complications of the disease . However, asthma exacerbations neither respond to inhaled steroids nor can they substantially be prevented in this way [4, 5]. Only the use of oral corticos-teroids seems to be unmistakably effective in case of exacerbations [6, 7].
KeywordsInfluenza Virus Respiratory Syncytial Virus Influenza Vaccine Influenza Vaccination Asthmatic Child
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