What are symptoms of chronic obstructive asthma?


Quick Answer

Symptoms of chronic obstructive asthma include an ongoing cough, shortness of breath, wheezing and chest tightening, according to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. People who have chronic obstructive asthma also commonly have the flu or colds more often.

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Full Answer

Not everyone who has chronic obstructive asthma notices these symptoms, and not everyone who has these symptoms has chronic obstructive asthma, explains the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Many of the symptoms are similar to other conditions and diseases, and a doctor must take steps to truly diagnose the condition. Those with mild symptoms may not notice them or may do things to adjust to the condition, such as taking the elevator instead of the stairs. Over time, however, the symptoms worsen and may become serious enough to seek medical treatment.

The severity of chronic obstructive asthma depends on the amount of lung damage present, and if smoking continues, the damage occurs more quickly, states the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Severe symptoms of chronic obstructive asthma may include swelling of the legs, ankles and feet, low muscle endurance and weight loss. Some of these symptoms may require hospitalization or emergency care. Those who experience symptoms such as a difficult time breathing, blue or gray fingernails, a fast heartbeat or low mental alertness should seek medical attention.

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