Which symptoms help to establish a diagnosis of pediatric asthma?

Updated: Jan 08, 2019
  • Author: Girish D Sharma, MD, FCCP, FAAP; Chief Editor: Kenan Haver, MD  more...
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The clinician should establish whether the patient has any of the following symptoms:

  • Wheezing: A musical, high-pitched whistling sound produced by airflow turbulence is one of the most common symptoms of asthma. The wheezing is usually during exhalation.

  • Cough: Usually, the cough is nonproductive and nonparoxysmal; coughing may be present with wheezing

  • Cough at night or with exercise: Coughing may be the only symptom of asthma, especially in cases of exercise-induced or nocturnal asthma; children with nocturnal asthma tend to cough after midnight, during the early hours of morning

  • Shortness of breath

  • Chest tightness: A history of tightness or pain in the chest may be present with or without other symptoms of asthma, especially in exercise-induced or nocturnal asthma

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