Asthma "Bronchoterms" You Should Know
If you're an asthmatic you should know the following bronchoterms.
1. Broncho: If you're an asthmatic you should know that broncho comes from the Greek word bronchos which means windpipe.
2. Bronchus (Bronchi): The main air passages of the lungs. Often refers to the large airways, such as the trachea or windpipe.
3. Bronchioles: These are the smaller air passages in the lungs. They branch from the bronchi deep into the lungs.
4. Bronchiole smooth muscles: These are muscles that wrap around the bronchioles.
5. Bronchospasm: This term refers to bronchiole smooth muscle spasms that squeeze the bronchioles causing an obstruction.
6. Beta Adrenergic Receptors: These are receptors that are scattered throughout bronchiole smooth muslces that, when stimulated, cause bronchiole smooth muscles to relax and thus become dilated.
7. Beta Adrenergic: This refers to any medicine (like Albuterol) that binds with beta adrenergic receptors on bronchiole smooth muscles. A reaction then occurs that causes those smooth muscles to relax and this ultimately dilates the air passages. This ultimately can make an asthmatic quickly breathe better.
8. Bronchodilator: Any medicine that dilates the air passages (bronchioles) in the lungs, including beta adrenergics like Albuterol and Xopenex.
9. Rescue medicine: Any beta adrenergic medicine. It's called rescue medicine because it's been known to provide instant relief from asthma symptoms.
10. Rescue inhaler: This is an inhaler with asthma rescue medicine in it; a beta adrenergic. Examples include albuterol and xopenex.
11. Albuterol: An asthma rescue medicine.
12. Xopenex: An asthma rescue medicine.
13. Bronchodilatoraholic: Anyone who uses a rescue inhaler more than what is recommended by the manufacturer, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and asthma guidelines, but with permmission by a physician. It's excessive use, but permissive use. An example here would be a hardluck asthmatic who needs to use rescue medicine more frequently than once or twice in a two week period or more frequently than every 4-6 hours. Antonym: Bronchodilator abuser.
14. Bronchodilator abuse: Use of asthma rescue medicine to excess, for reasons not recommended, and without permission by a physician. Examples here include use due to anxiety, habit, or as a performance enhancer.
15. Bronchodilator abuser: A person who participates in bronchodilator abuse.
16. Bronchodilator overuse: See bronchodilator abuse and bronchodilatoraholic.
17. Compliant Asthmatic: Any asthmatic who uses his rescue medicine as recommended by a physician, even if the dose and frequency is more than recommended by the manufacturer. See Gallant Asthmatic.
18. Off Label: Use of a medicine in ways not approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and not recommended by the pharmaceutical company. It refers to any of the following:
- Using unapproved dosing
- Using a medicine for an unapproved conditions
- Prescribing a medicine for an unapproved age group
Despite contrary belief, prescribing medications off label is perfectly legal in the United States. This is a good thing because it allows doctors a right to use a medicine to its full potential and this greatly benefits patients. In this way, bronchodilatoraholism is legal and bronchodilator abuse is illegal.