Only a doctor can accurately diagnose asthma, but some common symptoms of the chronic inflammatory disease include a chronic cough, shortness of breathe, wheezing and tightness in the chest, according to the Asthma Society of Canada. A doctor diagnoses asthma based on medical history, family history and lung function testing.
Many other diseases such as pneumonia, cystic fibrosis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease must be ruled out before a doctor can make an accurate diagnosis of asthma, according to the Asthma Society of Canada. Allergies, rhinitis and sinusitis are three conditions that often accompany asthma. When these are treated, the symptoms of asthma can be better controlled.