Alternative Strategies

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  • Dietary supplements

o    Few studies have shown that high doses of Vit. C and Vit. B6 (pyridoxine) result in some symptomatic improvement.

  • Herbal / Home remedies

o    Caffeine/Coffee can help asthma patients by opening up airway as it is related chemically to theophylline which is a conventional anti-asthma drug.

o    Tea made of ephedra and eucalyptus can help in clearing the secretions/mucus.

o    A host of Ayurvedic / Unani / Siddha remedies have been tried in asthma.

o    Some Chinese herbs, namely Ginkgo have been used from ancient times in the treatment of asthma.

  • Acupuncture

o    Some acupuncture procedures have been used for the treatment of asthma. They should be done by a qualified acupuncturist.

  • Homeopathy, Naturopathy, Osteopathy and chiropractic

o    They have all been used in asthma relief. Homeopathy is a highly individualized system of medicine which can help the patient in relieving symptoms. Patient must consult only qualified physicians of these respective branches.


  • Chronic asthmatics would do anything to get rid of their symptoms and be free from asthma. Some alternatives may be advertised at a number of places including popular media and termed as “cures” or “breakthrough in medicine”, but are usually undocumented.
  • Any new therapy brings some relief due to psychological placebo effect. However only if the relief is sustainable (without mixing therapies) should it be termed as an effective control measure.
  • The relief obtained with these medicines should be assessed objectively by the patient in the form of improvement in his lung function test or peak flow. If the relief is substantial with no major side effects, the patient may pursue that particular mode of therapy.
  • Care should be taken to avoid simultaneous use of different forms of therapy to prevent interactions.
  • Patient should be aware of all the constituents in a particular medicine which is dispensed in the form of “closed prescription”.
  • Magic cure preparations should be analyzed for the presence of allopathic drugs (such as steroids, etc.) from standardized laboratories.
  • Fish medicine of Hyderabad and other cities should also be evaluated properly by research institutes / laboratories for its constituents.