What is Asthma?

Asthma affects the lungs, making it difficult to breathe.

Asthma can:

  • Affect children or adults
  • Be the cause of a chronic nagging cough
  • Be intermittent or a life-long condition

How is Asthma Diagnosed?

Asthma is diagnosed based on your history and physical exam with a health care professional. Sometimes breathing tests needed to diagnose asthma.

How is Asthma Treated?

Asthma is treated with medicines that are either inhaled using a special medicine machine (nebulizer) or a portable dispenser (inhaler) or occasionally with oral medications.

Untreated asthma can be very serious and even deadly. But when treated, asthma can be manageable. 

Contact Us

If you have asthma or think you might, contact one of our family medicine locations to schedule an appointment.

Asthma: Additional Resources

Contact a Family Medicine Health Center

UPMC's Department of Family Medicine has several locations throughout the city of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County.

Find a family medicine health center close to you and call us to make an appointment or find out how we can help you with your primary care needs.


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For help in finding a doctor or health service that suits your needs, call the UPMC Referral Service at 412-647-UPMC (8762) or 1-800-533-UPMC (8762). Select option 1.

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Medical information made available on is not intended to be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should not rely entirely on this information for your health care needs. Ask your own doctor or health care provider any specific medical questions that you have. Further, is not a tool to be used in the case of an emergency. If an emergency arises, you should seek appropriate emergency medical services.

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