You probably already know that people with asthma frequently see an asthma doctor. What you do not know is that there are lots of other lung problems for which you can see an asthma doctor. Here are just a few of the other lung health problems and how an asthma doctor can help.
Any sort of "-itis" indicates that you have an inflammation in that part of your body. With bronchitis, it means that the inflammation is in your bronchi, the two main branches that sprout from the bottom of your airway and head into the lungs. The inflammation causes intense chest pain, constant coughing, and a host of other side effects. Your asthma doctor may prescribe either a mist inhaler or a pill and possibly an antibiotic to treat the inflammation, depending on the cause.
Pneumonia is the result of a bacterial infection in the lungs, excess water in the lungs as a result of near-drowning, food that went down the wrong pipe and is now spoiling in the lungs, or blood flowing into the lungs and creating a sticky, rotting mess as it sits there. The asthma doctor will assess the cause of your pneumonia, and then treat it accordingly. This could include a round of antibiotics, draining the excess fluid with a surgical procedure, and/or operating to remove the clotted blood or food and finding the source of the bleeding in the lungs. You may need to stay in the hospital for a day or two, depending on the severity of your situation.
The pleurae are the two, thin layers of membrane that make up the cavity or sac within which the lungs sit. As your diaphragm forces the lungs up to exhale, it is actually pushing on the pleurae, which then compresses the lungs so you can breathe out. Pleurisy is a condition whereby the pleurae are inflamed, infected and/or adhered to the lungs, making this otherwise loose and smooth-moving sac tight and immobile. As such, you can barely breathe, have intense chest pain, and do not get enough oxygen to the rest of your organs because you cannot inhale or exhale effectively. Surgery may be an option, as are certain medications, but usually you will need to be on prescription oxygen tanks the rest of your life. Your asthma doctor will discuss in detail with you what you can expect for treatment for this disease/infection.
For more information about these and other conditions that an asthma doctor can diagnose, talk to a center like North Texas Allergy.