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Seeking solutions for asthma.

Dear Dr. SerVaas,

Could asthma be a viral disease? I am 68 years old and an asthmatic.

But for one whole year after an acyclovir treatment for a case of shingles, my asthma was gone. I had no symptoms and took no medication until my first cold of the next winter. Then the asthma was back in full force. On the Internet, I see that researchers from Kagawa Medical University in Japan noted a similar correlation.

With the increasing plague of asthma, we should pay attention to such details and actively seek solutions. Would you look into this obscure but promising possibility?

Neva West Salser

Garland, Texas

Yours is a most interesting case history. As yet undiscovered viruses and bacteria may play a role in a number of chronic diseases. Interested readers may access the Japanese report by logging on to Enter "anti-asthma effect acyclovir" in the search box.

We sent your letter to expert asthma clinician and author Dr. Dean Mitchell, who advocates a potentially revolutionary solution for allergies and asthma by strengthening the immune system. Dr. Mitchell comments:

"I am intrigued and glad to hear that acyclovir helped your asthma. Although I am not familiar with any other such case, it does make sense. Asthma is considered an inflammatory disease. If the herpes virus 'inflamed' the lungs, it follows that the asthma might be resolved with antiviral therapy. My key advice is to keep your immune system strong to ward off the shingles and asthma."

In his new book, The Allergy and Asthma Solution, Dr. Mitchell describes the role of allergy drops vs shots in preventing reactions to airborne allergy and asthma triggers. His approach also includes stress-reducing exercises for better breathing and an Asthma Action Plan. For our full interview with Dr. Mitchell, visit or send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to "The Allergy and Asthma Solution," 1100 Waterway Blvd., Indpls., IN 46202.
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Title Annotation:MEDICAL MAILBOX
Author:SerVaas, Cory
Publication:Saturday Evening Post
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Nov 1, 2006
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