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Asthma symptoms include a cough, wheezing, chest tightness and breathlessness.

Asthma symptoms include a cough, wheezing, chest tightness and breathlessness.
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Complications of asthma

Badly controlled asthma can have an adverse effect on your quality of life. The condition can result in:

If you feel that your asthma is seriously affecting your quality of life, contact your doctor. Your personal asthma action plan may need to be reviewed to better control the condition.

In rare cases, asthma can lead to a number of serious respiratory complications, including:

  • pneumonia (infection of the lungs)
  • a collapse of part or all of the lung
  • respiratory failure, where the levels of oxygen in the blood become dangerously low, or the levels of carbon dioxide become dangerously high
  • status asthmaticus (severe asthma attacks that do not respond to treatment).

All of these complications can be life-threatening and will need medical treatment.

Last reviewed: July 2016

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