Asthma attack may progressively worsen over days, with more frequent, severe, and long-lasting episodes of bronchial obstruction, often associated with thick and viscid expectorations. A striking feature among clinical signs of severity is exhaustion.
In contrast, the attack may supervene suddenly in an apparently previously symptomless patient and develop in a fulminant way leading to severe respiratory failure in minutes or a few hours. This has been called sudden asphyxic asthma. Most of these patients are in coma, with a high incidence of respiratory arrest and cardiovascular instability. They develop marked mixed acidosis or extreme hypercapnia (with PaCO2 reaching values above 200 mmHg (26.7 kPa)). Response to therapy is usually very rapid, with fast normalization of PaCO2 and pulmonary function tests. In view of the scanty expectorations and rapid time course, which contrasts with other asthmatics experiencing slow-onset attack, bronchospasm may be the preponderant pathogenic mechanism in these patients.
Was this article helpful?
Do You Suffer From ASTHMA Chronic asthma is a paralyzing, suffocating and socially isolating condition that can cause anxiety that can trigger even more attacks. Before you know it you are caught in a vicious cycle Put an end to the dependence on inhalers, buying expensive prescription drugs and avoidance of allergenic situations and animals. Get control of your life again and Deal With Asthma Naturally