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Case Study Regarding Asthma - Essay Example

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The aim of the study : (1) to explain the process that leads to the structural and functional changes resulting from Jason’s asthma; (2) to explain how four of Jason’s clinical manifestations are related to the structural and functional changes…
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Case Study Regarding Asthma

Asthma affects 300 million people worldwide with increasing prevalence among children. According to World Health Organization (WHO), approximately 15 million disability-adjusted life-years are lost and 250,000 asthma deaths are reported worldwide with 500, 000 annual hospitalizations in individuals 18 years old and younger (Harver& Kotses, 2010, 19).
In order to understand the pathophysiology of asthma, one must first understand the normal physiological process of a normal airway, particularly air exchange in the lungs. Lungs primary function is to deliver oxygen into the bloodstream and remove carbon dioxide from the blood. In the lungs are small air sacs called alveoli where an exchange of gases occur (Harver& Kotses, 2010, 19)? The bronchioles, which are classified as smaller tubes are very fragile compared to the larger tubes of the respiratory system such as the trachea as these smaller tubes lack cartilaginous rings and only have a layer of smooth muscle. As the muscle contracts, airways are extremely narrowed due to the lack of cartilaginous support. Thus, contraction of the smooth muscles in the lungs may increase airway resistance and diminish airflow (Harver& Kotses, 2010, 19). In addition, there are cells that line the respiratory tract called the respiratory epithelium which varies from hair-like structure cilia and mucus-producing cells, and small blood vessels lying beneath the airway that supplies nutrients to the respiratory epithelium and smooth muscle cells.
Asthma is generally categorized as an inflammatory disease in response to triggering stimuli such as allergens, irritants, colds, exercise, and respiratory infections (Harver&Kotses, 2010, 20). Based on Jason’s history, possible triggering stimuli of asthma exacerbation are the history of a recurrent cough when he was 6 months old, family history of hay fever and eczema. ... Read More
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