Preventing thunderstorm-triggered asthma
Certain types of thunderstorms in spring or early summer in regions with high grass pollen concentrations in the air can cause life-threatening allergic asthma flare-ups in sensitised individuals, even if they have not had asthma before.1, 2, 3, 4, 5 People at risk of acute asthma flare-ups triggered by a thunderstorm include those with seasonal allergic rhinitis (with or without asthma), those with asthma (or a history of asthma), and those with undiagnosed asthma.2
Prevention and management are based on:6
- year-round asthma control
- preventive inhaled corticosteroid treatment
- management of seasonal allergic rhinitis, including preventive intranasal corticosteroid treatment
- avoiding exposure to thunderstorms
- ensuring appropriate access to relievers during grass pollen season.
In this section
Preventing thunderstorm-triggered asthma in individuals
- D'Amato, G., Vitale, C., D'Amato, M., et al. Thunderstorm-related asthma: what happens and why. Clin Exp Allergy. 2016; 46: 390-6.
- Davies, Janet, Queensland University of Technology,. Literature review on thunderstorm asthma and its implications for public health advice. Final report. Victorian State Government Department of Health and Human Services, Melbourne, 2017.
- Victoria State Government Department of Health and Human Services. The November 2016 Victorian epidemic thunderstorm asthma event: an assessment of the health impacts. The Chief Health Officer's Report, 27 April 2017.. Victorian Government, Melbourne, 2017.
- Marks GB, Colquhoun JR, Girgis ST, et al. Thunderstorm outflows preceding epidemics of asthma during spring and summer. Thorax. 2001; 56: 468-71. Available from: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1746065/
- Girgis, ST, Marks, GB, Downs, SH, et al. Thunderstorm-associated asthma in an inland town in south-eastern Australia. Who is at risk?. **. 2000; 16: 3-8.
- National Asthma Council Australia. Thunderstorm asthma. An information paper for health professionals.. NACA, Melbourne, 2017.