Exercise-induced asthma is triggered by vigorous or prolonged exercise or physical exertion. Most people with chronic asthma experience symptoms of asthma during exercise. However, there are many people without chronic asthma who develop symptoms only during exercise.
During normal breathing, the air we take in is first warmed and moistened by the nasal passages. Because people tend to breathe through their mouths when they exercise, they are inhaling colder and drier air.
In exercise-induced asthma, the muscle bands around the airways are sensitive to these changes in temperature and humidity and react by contracting, which narrows the airway. This results in symptoms of exercise-induced asthma, which include coughing with asthma, tightening of the chest, wheezing, unusual fatigue while exercising and/or shortness of breath when exercising.
Symptoms generally begin within 5 to 20 minutes after the start of exercise, or 5 to 10 minutes after brief exercise has stopped.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms with exercise, inform your doctor.
(Based on information from WebMd)
Times Union - Edited and written by Helen Edelman