Sunday, October 27, 2019

Cold-Induced Asthma

I have battled this for several years.  I bought a hunter's mask intended to solve this; a copper mesh over the mouth causes exhaled air to warm so your next inhale is warmed air.  My wife and I took the Springer Spaniels for a walk this evening at Eagle Island State Park, and pain in my lungs and rapid exhaustion held mne back on a flat and not terribly brisk pace.  The mask did little good.

It isn't cold air alone, I think, because without the mask, I was no worse off.  I worried that my aortic valve is giving up the ghost and this is oxygen deprivation, but 30 minutes at 2.1 mph on my treadmill in a nice warm house is not a problem.  I suspect that while cold air is a problem, the mask is adding a different problem.  It traps exhaled air so you are inhaling air that is now 4% carbon dioxide. The oxygen content is this reduced to 15%.  This is not enough to provoke the asphyxiation response from CO2 buildup in the blood, but I suspect the reduced oxygen is straining my system's cardiovascular capability.  The mask is no longer going to be used; if there was a mask that warmed incoming air (likely battery powered) but did not cause use of exhaled air, it might be worth trying.  Otherwise, I will not walk in cold weather.


  1. Hi Clayton.

    With all due respect, it doesn't sound like something I'd be comfortable self-diagnosing or satisfied by looking for "after-market" commercially available solutions.

    It's likely this has been diagnosed and treated by someone somewhere and it's probably written up in some medical journal(s).

    Have you consulted either an ENT or Pulmonary or Cardiac specialist?

    Stay healthy.


  2. I doubt the mask traps much of the exhaled air, unless it has a huge area in it to hold it. A typical exhalation or inhalation is several liters.