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Old 05-02-2011, 07:13 PM   #1
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Asthma peak flows in a 12 year old

My daughter is 5'0" and about 160 pounds. She has had asthma since she was 19 months old, and it is much worse this year. Her asthma is the type with the coughing spasms and protracted cough to the point of throwing up.

Her asthma is also made worse by exercise or illness.

My question is, her best peak flow to date has been 310, and right now as she coughs again they are about 270.

We really havent been to an asthma specialist, we are working towards that with our PCP. When do i get her in and get her checked? how low does the peak flow need to be to be in the scary range?

OH wanted to add she is on albuterol, and atrovent, for inhalers, and singulair.

Secondary question, I am 46 and 5'6" 200 pounds, and my peak flows at the best are 340, I am believing that is fairly low for me as well.

Thanks for listening
Christi

Last edited by 1mommyof8; 05-02-2011 at 07:15 PM.

 
Old 05-02-2011, 08:56 PM   #2
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Re: Asthma peak flows in a 12 year old

Heres what i can tell you about me. I have had excercise induced asthma most of my life which was upgraded to reg asthma last year b.c of multiple asthma attacks. Im 19, 5'6" and 150lbs. i am on singulair, symbicort and albuterol as needed. When i was in the hospital last i was told by the Resp therapist that 550 is a good peak flow for someone my age/size without asthma. They were hoping to see my peak flow be about 450 after a breathing treatment - i got to 400. Last night my peak flow was 400 a day after an asthma attack and being somewhat sick.

i think you're best bet is to compare to a "normal" peak flow for HER not really anyone else because everyones asthma is different. If i were you, id put a call into the dr tomorrow am and see what he/she says about the numbers but more importantly how she was and is feeling and go from there. However, if you're concerned you can take her to the ER or even give them a call and just ask some questions about peak flow and dangerous levels. Good luck
Jess

 
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Old 05-02-2011, 10:30 PM   #3
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Re: Asthma peak flows in a 12 year old

Definitely, compare it to her best. As long as she's no more than 20-30% below that, it's not TOO bad. In her case, that would be 220-250. Anything below that is bad.

However, you need to pay attention to symptoms, too. Coughing until you throw up is a bad sign.

Singulair works well in some children, not so well in adults. It might be time to add an inhaled steroid. They work quite well and have mild or no side effects in most people. It takes at least a week or two for them to start working, but they are a great option for long-term control.

 
Old 05-02-2011, 10:38 PM   #4
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Re: Asthma peak flows in a 12 year old

yes she hasn't really been well enough to know what her "best" is, although she has blown a 310 she said when she wasn't having these coughing spasms. Tonights its been between 230-270 at best, and she has really been coughing a lot.. luckily she finally was able to go to sleep, I will keep an eye on her..
Thank you both for all of your help!
Christi

 
Old 05-03-2011, 04:42 AM   #5
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Re: Asthma peak flows in a 12 year old

If she is having problems at bedtime you might try the albuterol BEFORE she goes to bed. That should help her get thru the night.

And you really should get her to a pulmonologist. They are so much better at working out asthma issues and formulating a asthma action plan than a PCP. It's what they do all the time!

And lastly, and I'm sure you are aware of this, her weight is exacerbating her breathing problems. Dropping a few pounds should also help.

 
Old 05-03-2011, 03:26 PM   #6
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Re: Asthma peak flows in a 12 year old

You can also find charts with expected peak flow meters based on your age, sex, and height. Those give you an idea of what "normal" is. It may not reflect what yours or your daughter's best is, but that'll give you sort of a base range if that's what you are looking for.

 
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