Do you remember how old you were when your asthma was first diagnosed? If you are one of the many Americans with adult onset asthma, which means that your asthma symptoms didn't occur until you were older and they may have come on after you had a cold or other illness, then you may be interested in learning about some new—and highly controversial—research findings about possible asthma causes that could change the course of your treatment.

Up until now, asthma was thought to be a chronic disease that had no cure. But in fact, a few forward-thinking researchers have uncovered some new information that, if confirmed, could help you to get relief for your breathing difficulties and as a result, could possiblly improve your quality of life overall.

Possible Asthma Causes

If your adult onset asthma is not triggered by any type allergies, then researchers say your asthma causes could boil down to a common strain of bacteria that could have taken root in your lungs that could be causing your persistent wheezing and cough.

Some Interesting New Facts

Consider these facts. While allergic asthma responds to allergy treatment, in many people with adult onset asthma, their condition doesn't respond to allergy medication, shots or environmental changes. To some researchers, this makes complete sense, since it their condition isn't caused by any indoor or outdoor triggers. Instead, these experts hypothesize that a type of bacteria takes up home in the lungs and then refuses to budge.

In fact, while some bacteria can be found through laboratory tests, the type that may be linked to asthma causes doesn't show up in most standard cultures, meaning that until now, doctors have not known it existed.  But blood tests of some patients with adult onset asthma seem to confirm the presence of bacteria and make the case for trying new treatment methods.

Research Findings

Further supporting this hypothesis are the findings of several studies in which patients with adult onset asthma were treated with an antibiotic. The majority of the participants experienced significant improvements in their lung functions and symptoms, making it clear to some doctors that bacteria could indeed be one of the major adult asthma causes.

The Bottom Line

Experts say that what this means for many patients with adult onset asthma is that there is hope that getting the right treatment can greatly relieve their condition.

Of course not all doctors are willing to jump on the bandwagon just yet. But if you have adult onset asthma and think bacteria could indeed be one of the possible asthma causes, you should see if your doctor would be willing to prescribe an appropriate antibiotic and see if any improvements occur.