To diagnose asthma, your doctor will first review your medical history, family history, and symptoms. Your doctor will want to know any past history of breathing problems you may have had, as well as a family history of asthma, allergies, eczema (a bumpy, itchy skin rash caused by allergies), or other lung diseases. It is important that you describe your symptoms in detail (cough, wheeze, shortness of breath, chest tightness), including when and how often they occur.
The doctor will perform a physical examination and listen to your heart and lungs. He or she may also order breathing tests, allergy tests, blood tests, and chest and sinus X-rays. The tests will find out if you do have asthma and if there are any other conditions that are contributing factors.