Children's Hospital Colorado
Breathing Institute
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Breathing Institute

About the Asthma Program at Children's Hospital Colorado

Asthma is the most common chronic condition in children, with symptoms ranging from recurrent coughing or wheezing to exercise-induced coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath or low endurance. Learn more about asthma.

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Our Asthma Program provides comprehensive education to patients and families about asthma, trigger identification (allergen skin testing if age appropriate), and age-appropriate pulmonary function testing. The latest in diagnostic testing is available for both infants and older children.

Our staff includes dedicated pulmonologists, allergists, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, registered nurses, respiratory therapists, a dietician and a social worker. Many of our staff members are certified asthma educators. 

Why choose Children’s Hospital Colorado for the treatment of your child’s asthma?

Children's Hospital Colorado Breathing Institute's mission is to provide comprehensive clinical care and consultation for children with common and complex breathing problems.

Our healthcare providers work closely with hospitals, referring providers and community organizations to promote healthy outcomes for our patients with asthma and to decrease the frequency of emergency room visits and hospitalizations due to asthma exacerbations.  

Our Asthma Program treats more children with asthma than any other hospital in Colorado. Every year, our team sees more than 2,000 patients for their asthma care and more than 200 are patients with high-risk asthma.

At Children’s Colorado, parents and families are valued members of their child’s healthcare team. Time is taken to answer their questions, address their concerns and provide them with the education and tools they need to manage their child’s asthma on a day-to-day basis and during exacerbations. Our asthma team also coordinates communication between your child’s healthcare providers.

What our asthma program offers

We evaluate all therapeutic options and provide opportunities for participation in research studies that may prevent asthma exacerbations even in difficult to control asthma.

Our team also develops personalized medicine techniques to help these children control their asthma and provide psychosocial support for children with asthma and their families.

Other services include:

  • Special clinics for the youngest children with wheeze and cough in order to apply the most recent evidence-based medical practices towards the prevention of asthma and the progression of disease.
  • Specialized clinical staff (nurse practitioners, physician assistants, nurses, respiratory therapists, asthma counselors) who have dedicated their careers to working with asthma patients.
  • Thorough child and family friendly evaluations
  • Spirometry (age-appropriate breathing test) 
  • Skin allergy testing (when age appropriate)
  • Asthma education and written asthma action plan
  • School asthma action plan
  • Education on medication, devices and usage
  • Collaboration and integration with our Allergy Program

Treatment for severe and high-risk asthma

The Multidisciplinary Asthma Clinic (MAC) provides comprehensive care for pediatric patients with difficult-to-treat and severe asthma. Patients will have a dedicated team of providers, including Pulmonary, Allergy and Social Work, and access to nutrition, speech therapy, and psychology on an as needed basis.

Our goal is to improve the health and quality of life for children with asthma and families of children with asthma who have frequent attacks or whose lives are chronically affected by asthma despite medication and excellent care by their current provider.

Patients ideally suited for this clinic may have had more than two emergency room visits or more than one hospitalization for their asthma. They may also not respond to standard guideline based therapy.

Our teams evaluate patients for additional medical diagnoses that complicate asthma care; identify triggers that patients may have a hard time avoiding; and optimize the care for allergies.

Many patients with difficult-to-treat asthma also report that life stressors make it hard to care for their asthma. Our dedicated social worker will explore these barriers to care and provide access to essential resources.

The coordinated care that families receive in the MAC helps avoid multiple appointments, simplifying their care. The multidisciplinary setting allows collaboration that leads to better communication and support for the primary asthma provider and other community based caregivers.

These appointments are held in the Multidisciplinary Clinic on the second floor of the Anschutz Medical Campus.

Asthma research

The Asthma Program is committed to conducting cutting-edge research designed to advance asthma care and offer the most advanced treatment options. Program members participate in developing Colorado state, national and worldwide asthma guidelines.

This research is aimed at identifying new treatment strategies and medications, with the goal of preventing the onset of the disease. We also conduct research in the school setting in order to support a school-centered approach to asthma management.