Asthma and Immune System

 - your Immune System may be worsening your Asthma

The immune system, the same system that aids safeguard from infections, can as well be responsible for worsening asthma.

 How is my Asthma and Immune System linked?

The immune system generally protects against foreign bacteria and viruses. The immune system may be the reason for worsening asthma symptoms and other allergic diseases.A lot of asthmatics are atopic (an inherited a predisposition towards allergy) where your immune system develops an overstated response to certain foreign substances or allergens. The body’s immune system senses these allergens, identifies them as foreign, and initiates to prepare to fight them off as a foreign intruder.The method that takes place is often referred to as the allergic cascade, which normally happens in 3 steps:

  1. Sensitization
  2. Early phase response
  3. Late Phase response

Sensitization - Allergen Exposure

The first time you are allergen exposed, i.e. Sensitization, you will not usually have symptoms. You may be exposed to allergens that excite the allergic cascade through:

  • Substance Inhalation such as dander, pollen or dust mites where the substances fix to your lung membranes.
  • Foods or medicines ingestion where the initial immune system reactions happen in the stomach.

At this point, the allergen has activated the allergy cascade; nonetheless you will not develop any symptoms or even recognize that something has taken place.Throughout the ensuing allergen exposures, you may develop asthma symptoms as part of the early-phase response.

Early Phase Response - Re-exposure

With allergen re-exposure your immune system senses the allergen as foreign leading to:

  • The mast cell/ IgE complexes produced in the sensitization state, binding to the allergen thinking that it is a foreign invader.
  • Mast cells then release inflammatory cells called mediators (e.g. Histamine) that swiftly travel all over your body with the resolve of fighting off the external invaders such as bacteria and viruses.
  • Owing to the body’s overreaction to the allergen you begin to experience symptoms.
  • Allergy symptoms are caused owing to the mediators reaction in unlike parts of your body.
  • Wheezing, coughing or feeling short of breath arises as the immunologic response causing swelling and narrowing of the airways in your lung. Runny nose or watery, itchy eyes may be experienced as a result. The immunologic response initiates just about instantly with the symptom staking place very soon after re-exposure lasting 3-4 hours.

Late Phase Response

Starting at the similar time as the early phase response, but not causing symptoms for several hours, is the late phase response. Other kinds of immune cells called eosinophils stimulated as a result of the mediators released by the re-exposure to an allergen. Eosinophils contain substances that when on the loose generally fight off infections, but in asthma, the cells harm the lung causing more inflammation and worsening symptoms.In the late phase, for at least 4 hours, symptoms will not develop, but may last as long as 24 hours. Increased inflammation and airflow obstruction may be more severe than what is seen during the early phase.Positively, a better understanding of the Asthma and Immune System will give an improved acceptance of what might cause the worsening of asthma symptoms and aid to gain better control.