A third of severe asthma sufferers have been put on a life support machine as the result of an asthma attack, figures show.
Research found that 28% of sufferers have experienced a potentially fatal attack which led to them being put on the life-saving machines.
Of those who suffer from the chronic inflammatory disease, over half live in fear of the next asthma attack, a survey found.
The figures, collated from 333 sufferers, found that two fifths of people with severe asthma have to visit accident and emergency units at least once a year.
Meanwhile a third have been admitted to hospital at least once in the last year, the research conducted by Novartis Pharmaceuticals found.
Dr Dinesh Saralaya, consultant respiratory physician at Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: "People with severe asthma whose asthma is not under control or who are experiencing regular attacks should discuss how to best manage the condition with their doctor.
"This is a key goal, since the majority of sufferers feel they can get on with life if their symptoms are controlled adequately.
"There are options available that can help them to lead full and happy lives, thereby reducing the economic and personal burden of this condition."
What To Do If Someone Is Having An Asthma Attack
Ask if they have their reliever inhaler (usually blue) and where it is. You may need to get it out of their bag for them.
Encourage them to take one to two puffs of their reliever inhaler.
Make sure they are sitting up.
Encourage them to take slow and steady breaths.
Keep them calm and reassure them.
If they are still not feeling better after two minutes they can take two puffs of their reliever again and continue to do so every two minutes (up to a maximum of 10 puffs).
If they feel better, they should be OK to carry on with their day - but make sure they see a doctor as soon as possible (ideally the same day).
If at any time you are worried about them, call an ambulance.
If after 10 minutes they don't feel better and their inhaler doesn't seem to be helping them, then call an ambulance.
If the ambulance hasn't arrived after 10 minutes then the sufferer should repeat Step 6, until help arrives.