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Asthma: Type 2 Inflammation

Asthma is an airway disease caused by persistent inflammation that can make it difficult to breathe. As many as 50-70 percent of people with asthma have Type 2 inflammation.

Type 2 inflammation is inflammatory and pathologic changes in the airway that can result in increased asthma exacerbations and decreased lung function. Type 2 inflammation can lead to uncontrolled persistent asthma.

Type 2 inflammation is found in both allergic and eosinophilic subgroups. In many patients, it’s a mix of both allergic and eosinophilic. Allergic asthma is triggered by inhaled allergens such as dust mites, pet dander, pollen, and mold, whereas the cause of eosinophilic asthma is unknown.

However, eosinophilic asthma causes swelling in the entire respiratory system and is often severe.

Cytokines, proteins that regulate inflammation, are major drivers of Type 2 inflammation. This inflammation can cause other conditions, such as allergic rhinitis, nasal polyps (growths in the nose or sinuses), eosinophilic esophagitis, and atopic dermatitis (eczema).

Many people effectively manage their disease with inhaled or oral steroids. However, if you have asthma that is difficult to control with medication, ask a specialist about Type 2 inflammation.

There are new biologic therapies available that provide targeted treatment for those with severe asthma.

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