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ravis Stork, host of “The Doctors” on tour with The Asthma Express
Travis Stork, host of “The Doctors” on tour with The Asthma Express Asthma is a chronic lung disease that causes swelling and narrowing of the airways.

Many people across the Midwest who suffer from asthma found help at their state fairs and local expo centers this summer when The Asthma Express visited the cities of Atlanta, Chicago, Indianapolis, Columbus, and concluding in Dallas in October.

Dr. Travis Stork, Emmy®-nominated host of the award-winning talk show “The Doctors” and a practicing ER doctor joined The Asthma Express program to help improve the understanding of allergic asthma and potential triggers. As an ER doctor, Dr. Stork has seen patients with severe asthma attacks and symptoms resulting from asthma and allergic asthma and wants to help educate people about the disease.

Stork teamed up with Angel Waldron of the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) to offer information about allergic asthma, the most common form of asthma. About 25 million Americans – nearly one in twelve - suffer from asthma and approximately six out of ten people with asthma have allergic asthma…but few people have actually heard of it.

If I have asthma, how do I know if I have allergic asthma?
Asthma is a chronic lung disease that causes swelling and narrowing of the airways that makes breathing difficult. Asthma causes symptoms such as coughing, chest tightness, wheezing, and shortness of breath. Of the different types of asthma, allergic asthma is the most common form, affecting approximately 60 percent of all asthma sufferers in the U.S. Some of the common allergens that may trigger an allergic asthma attack include pet dander, dust mites, and cockroaches.
Allergic asthma differs from asthma in that there are certain triggers that can set off an attack. According to Waldron, pet dander is one of the most prominent culprits, even when the pet does not share its owner’s bed. “Pet dander is so light that it can travel easily through the vent system in the home,” stressed Waldron. Dust mites and cockroaches are also high point triggers, which indicate that carpet-less floors are the best bet for asthma sufferers. At the health booths, people were screened to determine if their asthma was uncontrolled and if allergens played a role in their asthma. They were given the results to take to their allergist or pulmonologist to discuss and confirm the results and to determine if they should be screened for allergic asthma. The Asthma Control Test™ is also available at www.asthmaexpress.com for online use throughout the year.

Stork said he became involved with the program because, “So many people show up in the ER with severe almost scary attacks, all because they just did not understand how to manage their disease. Sometimes they are almost at death’s door. We just want people to understand that asthma is controllable, and people can have quality of life if they work with their doctor and can recognize the triggers. In a child, asthma can present just as a chronic cough, so understanding that symptom as a possible precursor to asthma and discussing that with their pulmonologist can lead to improved management of the disease. People can take the Asthma Control Test™ we offer at the fair booths to their doctor and form a game plan.”

The Asthma Express is an educational awareness program sponsored by Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation and Genentech along with the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA), aiming to improve the understanding of allergic asthma. The program highlights the increasing number of people suffering from the disease and how it may affect them. The program encourages people to get screened to help determine if their asthma is uncontrolled and to talk with their asthma specialist, an Allergist or Pulmonologist, about the results and to determine if they should be screened for allergic asthma. You can find the screener at www.asthmaexpress.com.

AAFA, www.aafa.org, a not-for-profit organization founded in 1953, is the leading patient organization for people with asthma and allergies, and the oldest asthma and allergy patient group in the world. AAFA is dedicated to improving the quality of life for people with asthma and allergic diseases through education, advocacy, and research. AAFA provides practical information, community-based services, and support to people through a network of regional chapters, support groups, and other local partners around the U.S. AAFA develops health education, organizes state and national advocacy efforts, and funds research to find better treatments and cures. In addition, the mission of AAFA is to provide online access to AAFA’s reliable, validated asthma and allergy information and tools to families, patients, parents, healthcare providers, policymakers, and others.

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"ravis Stork, host of “The Doctors” on tour with The Asthma Express"
   authored by:
Patricia Kirby brings several years of journalism, editing, and publishing experience to Radius magazine. She is a published writer and former co-editor of Hoosier Outdoor magazine, with a distribution throughout the mid-west. Patricia is also a form...

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