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EILO is often misdiagnosed

Presented By
Dr Emil Walsted, Bispebjerg Hospital, Denmark
NLC 2022
Exercise-induced laryngeal obstruction (EILO) is often mistaken for asthma. In fact, it is a very different condition that needs a specific management strategy mainly focused on making the patient understand what EILO is. Speech training may also prove beneficial, but an inhaler should not be part of therapy. Dr Emil Walsted (Bispebjerg Hospital, Denmark) explained that EILO is caused by the laryngeal structures which temporarily close during vigorous exercise. This phenomenon leads to exertional breathlessness, coughing during or after exercise, a (high-pitch or) wheezing sound on inspiration, and throat tightness. These symptoms resemble those of asthmatic patients, hence the frequent misdiagnosis. EILO is most frequently diagnosed in adolescents, with more young women than men presenting with the condition,” Dr Walsted added. “As it is often diagnosed as asthma, patients are prescribed asthma medication such as inhalers. These do not alleviate their sy...

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