Airing: Episode 481, Week of Saturday February 16, 2019
As many as half of people with severe asthma have a type of asthma that’s linked with elevated levels of white blood cells. Eosinophils Asthma or “E” asthma eosinophils, are a type of white blood cell that are part of the immune system but for some patients with severe asthma they can lead to airway inflammation and severe asthma attacks.
Oral steroids can help relieve the symptoms but they also can have side effects in the short term that can be weight gain, sleep disruptive or mood disturbance. In the long run, it can cause things like glaucoma, osteoporosis, or heart disease.
So again, overuse of steroids is definitely a concern when patients are using oral steroids consistently. That’s a sign to talk to their doctor about their asthma. So a simple routine blood test can help determine if you have asthma. Patients are encouraged to speak with their health care provider and ask for a blood test, if the blood test shows elevated white blood cell counts it means that you have e asthma and may need a different type of treatment.