The Asthma Center

Non-Allergic (Intrinsic-Type) Asthma

If you have non-allergic or intrinsic-type asthma, you most likely suffer from asthmatic symptoms following an infection that settles in your chest. Since these infections are usually viral, antibiotics do not help since they are ineffective against viruses. Less frequently, asthma may be provoked by bacterial infections often associated with sinusitis or bronchitis. Antibiotics are often essential in these situations.

Symptoms also may be provoked by other non-allergic factors such as weather changes, cold air, exercise, indoor pollutants (formaldehyde, household cleansing products and chemicals, cigarette smoke, perfumes), outdoor pollutants (ozone, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide) and strong odors (perfumes, scented sprays, fresh paint, moth balls). However, non-allergic asthma is not caused by allergies. Therefore, these individuals typically produce negative allergy skin tests.