top of page

Asthma and Breathlessness 

Facts & Statics 

According to Asthma UK:

  • 5.4 million people in the UK are currently receiving treatment for asthma: 1.1 million children (1 in 11) and 4.3 million adults (1 in 12).

  • Every 10 seconds someone is having a potentially life-threatening asthma attack in the UK.

  • On average, 3 people die from an asthma attack in the UK every day

  • The NHS spends around £1 billion a year treating and caring for people with asthma.

  • In 2016/17 (the most recent data available) there were 77,124 admissions to hospitals for asthma in the UK.

  • In 2017 (the most recent data available) 1,484 people in the UK died from an asthma attack in the UK

  • Asthma is the most common lung condition by a considerable margin.

  • Deaths from asthma attacks are the highest they have been in the last decade and have increased by more than 33% over the last ten years, according to Asthma UK’s analysis of data from The Office for National Statistics (ONS)

  • The UK has one of the worst asthma death rates in Europe, with the rate of people dying from an asthma attack increasing by more than 20% in five years.

  • The UK’s average asthma death rate over five years is worse than countries such as Greece, Italy and the Netherlands  – and it is almost 50% higher than the average death rate in the European Union.

  • Experts at Asthma UK say that the UK’s poor death rate for asthma attacks may be because the condition is not taken seriously enough, with previous research from the charity revealing that 1 in 6 people in the UK does not know or unsure if the condition can be fatal.

  • Asthma UK suggests the lack of basic care patients are getting in the UK could also be a contributing factor. Almost two thirds (65%) of people with asthma are not receiving the basic care from healthcare professionals that they are entitled to, which includes a yearly review, a check to ensure they are using their inhaler properly and a written asthma action plan.

  • The analysis of official figures from the Office for National Statistics, released by the charity Asthma UK on 9 August, shows that more than 1400 adults and children died from asthma attacks in 2018, an 8% increase since 2017.

  • Overall, more than 12 700 people have died from asthma in England and Wales in the past decade. Deaths increased by 33% during 2008-18.a

What is Asthma?

  • Asthma is a common long-term disease that affects the tubes that carry air in and out of the lungs. Certain triggers can cause the airways to become inflamed and tighten. The triggers include stress, exercise, cold air, smoke, pollution, pollen etc. Asthma affects people of all ages and often starts in childhood, although it can develop for the first time in adults. The wheezing, coughing, and chest tightness associated with asthma are often caused by a strong immune response to environmental allergens. Certain types of asthma could develop with eczema since childhood as both are an anti-inflammatory response of the body’s immune system.

Image by Matthias Heyde

What is the conventional treatment for Asthma?

According to NHS Uk Asthma sufferest are treated with:


Reliever inhalers: Relive the symptoms when they occur. Used when needed to quickly relieve the asthma symptoms

Preventer inhalers: Prevent the symptoms from developing. Used regularly to prevent asthma symptoms from occurring. (Preventer inhalers contain steroids)


Leukotriene receptor antagonists (LTRAs)

Possible side effects include tummy aches and headaches


Possible side effects include headaches and feeling sick

Steroid tablets


Injections and surgery

injections or surgery, are rarely needed but may be recommended if all other treatments are not helping.

Acupuncture and Asthma

Recent studies confirm that acupuncture could be used as an adjunctive modality to control the symptoms of Asthma. the National Institutes of Health (NIH) suggested that acupuncture could be used as an adjunct treatment or an acceptable alternative or be included in a comprehensive management program in many diseases including asthma. Acupuncture aims to treat the person as a whole to bring balance to the system with minimum side effects. Data show that asthma alone has a heavy load on NHS. By choosing acupuncture to help with the symptoms as an adjunctive theraphy we can manage the load and maximise the outcome.

For more information for use of acupuncture for asthma click here and here.

Image by Victor Garcia

For more information Contact us so we can help you

bottom of page