Fresh air does not smell of fragrance

Frisk luft lukter ikke av parfyme.

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World spirometry day 2014

Today is world spirometry day 2014.

Do you breathe heavily when walking? Do you smoke? Do you cough often? Do you feel like having a tight chest?

Go and test your lungs! I have done it before, it is easy. 





You just blow in a tube. :)

(Photo is old)

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Peak Flow – PEF – How to?

The Peak Flow meter, or PEF, is a meter you blow into to check your lung function. It measure your ability to breath.

Peak Flow Messurement

This is an instrument used for messuring the airflow. You hold the handle and blow in the front. You get the results at the left side. Here I blow 350 as you see to the left, and the right side shows the normal value for a healthy person. This vary from Adult to children and women and men, so check with a lung expert for best use.

According to National Jewish Health, every asthmatic should blow into his pf meter twice a day first thing in the morning before you take any meds, and before bed.  After two weeks, you take the highest number that you blew and this is your personal best.

Now, when you blow 80-100% of your personal best, you are good to go.  When you blow 60-80% of your personal best, you should use your rescue inhaler, wait 20-30 minutes, and blow in your pf again.  If your pf is now above 80%, you are okay for now, but you should use your pf every four hours.


However, if your PEF is still below 80%, you should call your doctor.


When you blow in your meter and your pf is less than 60%, you should use your rescue inhaler and then have someone take you to the ER.  Or, if you are bad enough, call an ambulance (you should avoid driving yourself to the ER).

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Asthma treatment – PEF, Peak flow, Optichamber, asthma medicine

So what to do about it?

Having a cold and a cough that seems to never stop? It might not be a cold as you think, it might be asthma. If you cough and cough without stop over a long period of time you should call your doctor and ask them to make a spirometry test on you. Then they measure how well your lungs work when inhaling and exhaling.

PEF – Peak Flow meter

A portable PEF Peak Flow meter can look like this:

Peak Flow Messurement

This is an instrument used for measuring the airflow. You hold the handle and blow in the front. You get the results at the left side. Here I blow 350 as you see to the left, and the right side shows the normal value for a healthy person.

At the doctor’s office or the hospital they probably have another kind of PEF. A machine you blow into that measures your lung capacity using a computer to take up the measuring.

Measuring is often done over time so that it is possible to see if it is something that is asthma or just a temporary thing. If you work it is wise to check both at home and at work. Then you run two separate test on two separate sheet. This is wise since you then are able to check if the asthma is work related. How to use PEF?

The doctor also checks for allergies in addition to asthma.

If your doctor concludes with that you have asthma then you are put on medication. The modern asthma treatment is made with different possibilities. There are allergy pills, pills for relaxing the bronchi and inhalers used for asthma to reduce inflammation of the bronchi and relieve the cramping muscles round the bronchi.

Asthma can be controlled or managed by using anti-inflammatory medication and making some small or bigger changes to your lifestyle.

The inhaler is a life saver. You should always carry it with you and use it as soon as you feel any wrong in your lungs and breathing. If you get an asthma attack and do not have your medicine you might face getting VERY sick. You might become so sick that you in fact in the long run risk to die. If the lungs stop functioning and can not take up oxygen then the internal organs and the brain get no oxygen and then you can die. How long this take can vary from person to person and how severe kind of asthma you got and how severe kind of a attack you got.

Optichamber – inhalation chamber

Asthma treatment for acute care. The inhalers come with a holder and a gas container. You put the piece in your mouth and press the top of the gas container. It can also be used with a inhalation chamber (foto of Optichamber) as shown in the image. Note that asthma medicine got an expiration date. Do not use old medicine.

An inhaler is asthma medication stored in a container, and when using it then it is administered through the nebulizer in mist-form.

An asthma inhaler can be used with an inhalation chamber as shown below:

An inhaler used together with a inhalation chamber. One press the medicine gas container in the end and then breathe through the mask. This one is mostly used when the person is very ill. This photo was taken in May of 2009. I was very ill and this is not only a demonstration.

The muscles located in the bronchial tubes are constricted during an asthma attack, making it harder for the patient to inhale and exhale air. When using an inhaler you get relaxation of those bronchial muscles allowing air to flow freely through an airway. Some of the medicines also calm the inflammation in the bronchi.

Nebulizer with the hospital

Sometimes the asthma attack get so bad that your own personal inhaler is not enough to give relaxation from the illness. In such cases one must go to the hospital to get more assistans. Such times they measure the amount of oxygenated hemoglobin using finger pulse oximeters. And you get to breathe medicine through a mask from a machine.

This is the machine with our hospital. This kind of machine give you medicine while having an acute asthma attack. This is for the worse case scenario. This photo is taken in 2009 and is an actual ongoing asthma attack.

Home nebulizers

There are nebulizers for home use, even portable ones.


AeronebGo nebulizer

Read more about AeronebGo

Maintain health

What more is important is to eat good and healthy and sleep well. You may experience getting worse in your asthma when you get psychologically / emotional stressed, stress, have not eaten or are tired. Having trouble breathing can in fact make you have problems sleeping well, so taking your medicines is not only important to stagger the asthma, but also to make you sleep easier. It is important to have peace in your life, eat, sleep, and stay away from make you sick. It is also good to do some exercise. You do not need to run a marathon, but walking, bi-cycling and doing normal stuff is great for your health.


Some medicines are required to be inhaled, while others are taken as a pil or intravenously. It is of most importance that asthma patients utilize all asthma drugs precisely to medical directions.

There are many kinds of medicines for asthma. Shown below are only some examples. It may vary with what country you live in. Most treatment are similar though, inhalers and pills are used all over the world but the names can be different.

Here are some examples:

Examples of asthma medicines all over the world. Never use asthma medicine that is not given you by a doctor.

There are differences between gas inhalers and turbuhalers. There are three kinds of inhalers.

  • gas form – used to fight a sudden attack
  • pulver – used to long-term treat asthma, often also treats the inflammation.
  • pulver – a mix function between gas form and long-term treatment. This one both fight a sudden attack and to preclude.

Then there are also

  • pills
  • liquid asthma medicine
  • shots
  • cortisone
  • intravenously

There may be more..

If you are unable to get relief by using asthma medicine or the symptoms worsen, do seek emergency medical attention as soon as possible.

Hope this was helpful to you. :)

Take care!

Also read about

Hva er astma? What is Asthma?
Asthma – What is?
Educational image on asthma
Asthma treatment – PEF, Peak flow, Optichamber, asthma medicine
Optichamber mask + AeronebGo nebulizer
Optichamber Inhalation chamber and how to make best use of your medicine