This breakthrough treatment for patients with severe asthma reduces their need for inhalers—and their trips to the ER.
Many professional athletes play sports despite having asthma. For one professional player, however, just being able to play meant a lot of preparation before each game and
playing despite having low energy. Since receiving bronchial thermoplasty treatments, his energy levels have changed significantly, according to Ganesh Krishna, MD, the interven- tional pulmonologist who was responsible for introducing the breakthrough asthma treatment at the hospital. "He’s a very grateful patient, thanking us repeatedly for helping him be able to get enjoyment out of playing the game again." Bronchial thermoplasty is a noninvasive treatment for patients with severe asthma. During the procedure, a scope inserted into the lungs allows deployment of a special device that applies gentle heat to the smooth muscles in the asthma patient’s airways. Over three treatments, constriction of these muscles, which leads to debilitating asthma attacks, is dramatically reduced, curtailing the need for inhalers and trips to the ER.
"Most patients are able to stop medications, including steroids, that some have been using for 10 to 15 years,” says Dr. Krishna. "with normal breathing, patients regain their energy and are able to get back to work or resume regular activities."
In the two years that the treatment has been available at the hospital, the program has grown to where El Camino Hospital is one of the highest-volume bronchial thermoplasty centers in the country and has been designated as the west coast training center for physicians who want to offer this breakthrough procedure for their patients.
Learn more or watch this video about the Bronchial Thermoplasty procedure.