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Exercise Induced Asthma

Exercise induced asthma: if you cough, wheeze or feel out of breath during or after exercise, you may have exercise-induced asthma. As with asthma triggered by other things, exercise-induced asthma occurs when the main air passages of your lungs, the bronchial tubes, become inflamed. The muscles of the bronchial walls tighten, and cells in the lungs produce extra mucus, further narrowing your airways. This can cause signs and symptoms that range from minor wheezing to severe trouble breathing.

If you have exercise-induced asthma, physical exertion may be the only thing that triggers your symptoms. Or exercise may just be one of several things that trigger an asthma attack. The good news is that exercise-induced asthma doesn't have to limit your athletic goals — whether your aim is a weekly jog or elite competition. Proper treatment can help you keep symptoms under control — and help you exercise as much as you want.

Signs and symptoms of exercise-induced asthma are the same as those caused by asthma induced by other triggers.

Common signs and symptoms, which occur during or after exercise, include:

  • Coughing
  • Wheezing
  • Chest tightness or pain
  • Shortness of breath

Additional signs and symptoms of exercise-induced asthma include:

  • Fatigue during exercise
  • Poor athletic performance
  • A long recovery time after exercise

Typically, signs and symptoms of exercise-induced asthma start after five to 15 minutes of exercise. In some cases, signs and symptoms of exercise-induced asthma start after your workout is over.