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Developing an Asthma Action Plan


Print Out Asthma Action Plan continued...


Use ______ 15 to 20 minutes before exercise or exposure to a known trigger.


This is NOT where you should be. There may be coughing, wheezing, and mild shortness of breath. Sleep and usual activities may be disturbed. You may be more tired than usual. Peak flow is 50% to 80% personal best.

ACTION: Relief of Symptoms.

  • Keep taking green zone medicines listed above. Use spacer with metered dose inhalers (or other device prescribed for a child).
  • Add quick-relief medicine: Albuterol ____ puffs or ________ in nebulizer. May use every 4 hours as needed. Also add: ____________________.
  • After taking quick-relief medicine, symptoms should be relieved in 5 to 15 minutes. If symptoms do not improve completely, REPEAT quick-relief medicine 1 to 2 more times, 5 to 20 minutes apart (up to 3 treatments in one hour). (For children, repeat albuterol 1 to 2 more times, 15 to 20 minutes apart; use up to 3 treatments in one hour.)  If there is no improvement, call your doctor.
  • CALL your doctor or nurse/therapist for further advice.
  • If you or other family member improves completely after 2 to 3 treatments, continue the quick-relief medicine 4 times per day for the next 24 hours. Call for further advice.
  • For children: If symptoms completely go away but return in 4 hours or less, repeat albuterol dose and continue to use 4 times per day for the next 48 hours. Call your doctor.

NOTE: Call the doctor if you or other family member keeps dropping into the yellow zone. The green zone plan may need to be changed to prevent this.


RED ZONE: Medical Alert -- This is an Emergency!
Red zone means you or your family member, including teenagers and children, need urgent medical care. Symptoms may include frequent, severe cough; severe shortness of breath; wheezing; trouble talking and walking; and rapid breathing. Peak flow is less than 50% of personal best.

ACTION: Reversal of symptoms

  • Take these medicines: Albuterol with spacer ______ or _______ in nebulizer.
  • ADD: __________________.
  • Give your child albuterol two puffs or nebulizer treatment with Xopenex or albuterol.
  • If there is no change, GO TO THE EMERGENCY ROOM.
  • If you or your family member (including teenagers and children) has trouble walking or talking, is gasping for air, has blue lips or fingernails, or is unable to do a peak flow, this is an emergency. CALL 9-1-1.
  • If symptoms improve but do not go away completely, return to the yellow zone plan and follow the instructions. Call your doctor for further advice.
Next Article:

Which asthma symptom bothers your child the most?