Viral Profile and Clinical Characteristic in Acute Asthma Exacerbation Patients
Keywords:Acute asthma exacerbations; Clinical Characteristics; Viral profile
Background: Asthma is a heterogeneous disease characterized by chronic airway inflammation. The
virus infection in respiratory tract will activate greater pro-inflammatory cytokines in asthma patients.
The enhancement of pro-inflammatory cytokines induces various clinical symptoms. This study aims to
investigate the respiratory virus and clinical characteristics among patients with acute asthma exacerbation.
Methods: In this study, subjects were divided into 3 groups based on acute asthma exacerbation triggers.
The first group triggered by virus infection; the second group triggered by non-virus infection with ILI; and
the third group without any infection. Nasopharynx or throat swabs were collected to detect any respiratory
virus. Virus was detected by Multiplex PCR (xTAG Respiratory Viral Panel Fast V2/ LUMINEX)
Results: According to PCR examination, the prevalence of virus infection was 46.2%. Only two types of
viruses identified, which were Influenza A virus and Rhinovirus. All patients in the second groups showed
a symptom of cough with purulent sputum, while no patients from the other two groups showed similar
symptoms. PEFR and % PEFR prediction of patients with Influenza A virus infection were higher than in
Rhinovirus infected-patients (210 L/min and 48.6% vs 195 L/min and 45%).
Conclusion: Acute asthma exacerbation is one of the most reasons patients came to emergency ward. The
majority of acute asthma exacerbation was caused by infection, and most of it was viral infection. Clinical
sign differs according to the trigger, therefore the use of antibiotics should be avoided, unless there are signs
and symptoms of bacterial infections
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