Skip to main content


Lyon Primary Care

Primary Care Physician located in Midtown, New York, NY

We can’t cure your asthma at Lyon Primary Care in Midtown, New York, NY, — no one can actually cure asthma. However, we can help improve your control and create an action plan that keeps you breathing freely. Our board-certified primary care specialist, Valerie Lyon, M.D., has the experience you need to manage your asthma. Call our office today to book your appointment.

Asthma Q&A

What is asthma?

Asthma causes the tiny airways in your lungs to narrow as they swell and produce excess mucus that makes it difficult to breathe. If your asthma is mild or well-controlled, you may consider it a minor issue that’s more of a nuisance than a threat.

When your asthma is severe, however, frequent flare-ups (which cause coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath) can greatly limit your daily activities. Uncontrolled asthma can also trigger a life-threatening attack that requires an immediate medical response.

Regardless of whether you have mild, moderate, or severe asthma, your condition can change over time and may require adjustments in your treatment. It’s important that you follow up as needed to prevent worsening of your symptoms, and that you have a plan in place to effectively address dangerous asthma attacks.

What are the symptoms of asthma?

Symptoms can vary in frequency and severity. You may, for instance, only notice symptoms when you exercise or be more prone to asthma attacks in certain environments — such as around a campfire.

Typical asthma symptoms include varying degrees of:

  • Shortness of breath
  • A persistent cough
  • Chest tightness or pain
  • Difficulty sleeping due to shortness of breath, coughing, and wheezing
  • Worsening coughing and wheezing with respiratory viruses such as colds or the flu

Clues that your asthma may be worsening include:

  • Worsening and more frequent bouts of asthma symptoms
  • Increasing difficulty breathing per peak flow meter testing (a handheld device that measures lung function)
  • More frequent use of a quick-relief (rescue) inhaler 

What is an asthma action plan? 

An asthma action plan is a written account of your treatment regimen that we develop and review together.  It’s designed to help you evaluate your asthma control and to determine which type of medicines might be appropriate for you.

There is different treatment for those patients with intermittent asthma, mild persistent asthma, moderate persistent asthma, and severe persistent asthma. 

We will determine where you are in this range by discussing your frequency of daytime symptoms, nighttime symptoms, the frequency of need of rescue inhaler, interference with normal activity and lung function, and the need for oral systemic corticosteroids in a single year.

Depending on where you land in this continuum, we will choose either step-up or step-down therapy. 

Call our office today to make an appointment.