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Int J Gen Med. 2011;4:779-82. doi: 10.2147/IJGM.S20327. Epub 2011 Nov 18.

Exercise-induced bronchospasm: implications for patients with or without asthma in primary care practice.

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University of Nevada School of Medicine, Reno, NV.


Exercise-induced bronchospasm (EIB) can represent a substantial barrier to physical activity. We present the cases of two patients with EIB, one with asthma, and one without asthma, who were evaluated at our primary care practice. The first case was a 44-year-old man with a history of seasonal allergic rhinitis but no asthma, who reported difficulty breathing when playing tennis. The second case was a 45-year-old woman who presented with persistent, generally well-controlled asthma, who was now experiencing bouts of coughing and wheezing during exercise. In both cases, an exercise challenge was used to diagnose EIB, and patients were prescribed a short-acting beta agonist to be used immediately before initiating exercise. EIB is a frequently encountered problem among patients presenting to primary care specialists. Affected patients should be made aware of the importance of proactive treatment with a short-acting beta agonist before initiating any exercise.


asthma; compliance; exercise-induced bronchospasm

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