Medication is an effective treatment for asthma available at The London Clinic. We also offer Buteyko breathing techniques.
For mild to moderate asthma, inhalers provide an effective, safe and easy to use treatment that delivers drugs directly to the airways. As only very small quantities of the drug will get into the bloodstream, systemic side effects are minimal or negligible.
The attachment of a spacer device to the inhaler helps increase the delivery of drugs and is particularly useful in small children or those whose inhaler technique is not optimal. Medication designed for inhalation can also be delivered via nebulisers, ‘misting machines’, which are driven either by battery or plugged into the mains.
There are two main types of asthma medication:
- Relievers, also called short-acting bronchodilators: often delivered in a blue or white inhaler, these work quickly and can produce almost immediate relief from mild to moderate chest tightness. Relievers may need to be used several times a day as their effect wanes after a while. The most widely used short-acting bronchodilator is salbutamol, a beta2 agonist which works by relaxing the smooth muscles in the airway walls.
- Preventers: these medications are usually steroids (corticosteroids rather than anabolic steroids) and work by decreasing the inflammatory response in the airways. They may come in a brown or beige inhaler device and their effect is slower than that of relievers but lasts longer. As a result, they are usually used twice a day.
The dose of steroids in inhalers is low and delivered directly to the desired site of action.
Other medication used to treat asthma
In cases where asthma symptoms prove particularly difficult to control despite the above medication, it is usual to either increase the dose of inhaled steroids or add in a long-acting beta agonist (LABA).
These two drugs are often combined into the same inhaler. Combination inhalers come in a variety of devices so it is important that the correct one is chosen to ensure ease of use.
A short course of oral steroids may prove necessary for some patients whose asthma exacerbation is particularly severe and inhaled treatment on its own proves ineffective.
Other drugs available to the treating physician include those designed to target particular inflammatory pathways or to produce additional bronchodilatation above what may be achieved by first-line drugs. A number of immunomodulatory drugs are also in development. One such agent currently available is a monoclonal antibody that neutralises IgE, the antibody that promotes allergic reactions.
This treatment, provided by The London Clinic's physiotherapy service, aims to reduce symptoms, including shortness of breath, coughing and asthma attacks.
Why choose The London Clinic
Excellence in one place
We operate as teams of experts with world-class resources dedicated to maintaining the highest standards of medical care. You are surrounded by the latest treatments and advice with everything you need to get back to your best health.
Personal care, every time
Exceptional patient care is a way of life for us. Our nurses, clinicians and support teams are dedicated to the care of a very small number of patients, so have more time for you. They’ll be with you every step of the way, tailoring your care around you and giving the peace-of-mind that comes with knowing you’re in the best hands.
We work together as one to guide you through each step of your experience, with complexities unravelled and answers readily to hand. Your personal treatment plan will be laid out for you, with all the details taken care of so you can focus on you.
What's included in your package?
Choosing The London Clinic means your treatment plan will be laid out for you, with all the details taken care of so you can focus on you.
Your treatment package will include:
- Enhanced pre-admission assessment
- Your treatment with our complete care team at your fingertips
- Personalised aftercare and follow-up
We want you to be in control of your health. That’s why we also offer optional services such as comprehensive recovery packages and extra touches for you to choose from during your stay with us.
How to pay
- You can use private medical insurance (PMI) to access this treatment. We work with all major PMI providers in the UK and many internationally
- You can pay for yourself (self-pay)
- If you’re paying for yourself, we have finance options available with Chrysalis