In Germany, the treatment of severe asthma has seen progress with several approaches, added Prof. Felix Hert.

Prof. Felix Hert is a globally recognized expert in respiratory diseases. He is among the leading specialists in treating patients with obstructive lung diseases such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

He serves as the chief physician at the Thoracic Clinic of Heidelberg University. Since 2004, he has been the head of the Department of Internal Medicine, Pulmonology, and Intensive Care Medicine at the Thoracic Clinic in Heidelberg.

Professor Hert is the chief editor of the Respiration journal and a member of various important scientific societies, including the European Respiratory Society (ERS), the American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP), and the German Society of Pneumology (DGP). In 2012, he chaired the European Association for Bronchology and Interventional Pulmonology. He has received numerous awards for his contributions to the field of respiratory diseases. He leads the center for the treatment of patients with severe asthma in Heidelberg, where over 1000 patients with severe asthma receive care annually.

The professor is in Bulgaria for his participation in the autumn meeting of the Bulgarian Society of Respiratory Diseases.

What is your advice for the prevention and early diagnosis of asthma?

Preventing and diagnosing asthma early are crucial for effective control of this chronic respiratory condition. My advice for asthma prevention and early diagnosis focuses on several key strategies:

Know the risk factors: Understanding asthma risk factors such as family history, allergies, and exposure to environmental pollutants is essential. Identifying these factors can help you take proactive steps.
Identify early symptoms: Be vigilant in recognizing early signs of asthma, such as wheezing, coughing, and shortness of breath. These symptoms may not always be obvious, but early identification is crucial.
Develop an asthma action plan: Patients, in collaboration with their supervising specialist, should create an asthma action plan. This plan outlines the steps to take when symptoms worsen and helps prevent severe asthma attacks.
Regular check-ups: Regular check-ups are crucial for monitoring asthma and adjusting treatment if necessary.
How does asthma affect the patient’s life, and what can be done to keep the disease well-controlled?

Asthma can significantly impact a patient’s life, causing recurring breathlessness, coughing, and limiting physical activity. It can disrupt daily life, work, and sleep. To maintain well-controlled asthma, patients are advised to:

Adhere to their therapy: Take asthma medications as prescribed by your doctor.
Follow the asthma action plan: Develop a personalized action plan with your doctor to manage symptoms and exacerbations.
Identify and avoid triggering factors: Recognize and minimize exposure to asthma triggers such as allergens and irritants.
Regularly monitor and evaluate lung function by the treating specialist, and if deemed necessary, have the therapy adjusted by them.
Lead a healthy lifestyle: Maintain a balanced diet, engage in physical activity, and avoid smoking.

With appropriate treatment prescribed by a doctor, asthma can be controlled, and patients’ symptoms can be reduced.

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