World Asthma Foundation Declares War on Asthma at ATS 2013
ATS 2013, PHILADELPHIA – The World Asthma Foundation (WAF) is declaring war on Asthma and is calling for support for May 2013, Asthma Awareness Month.
The campaign is in support of 26 million people in the United States living who are battling asthma, a disease affecting the lungs and causing repeated episodes of wheezing, breathlessness, chest tightness, and coughing. Asthma cannot be cured, but it is possible to manage the disease successfully in order to reduce and prevent asthma attacks, also called episodes according to the U.S. Center for Disease Control.
The World Asthma Foundation’s War on Asthma Campaign was announced today the American Thoracic @atsConference taking place in Philadelphia, PA. this week.
The World Health Organization estimates 300 million people worldwide suffer from asthma and 250,000 asthma-related deaths are reported annually. It is one of the most common and costly diseases in the world and its prevalence has increased significantly in recent decades.
“We are entering a new era of public awareness of people living with chronic lung disease such as Asthma and COPD,” said Sam Louie, MD and professor of medicine and director of the UC Davis Asthma Network (UCAN). Louie is also director of the UC Davis Reversible Obstructive Airway Disease (ROAD) Center and a World Asthma Foundation (WAF) Board Member.
“People with Asthma and COPD deserve better treatment,” Louie said. “It requires that we all take responsibility, patients too, but physicians must take their empathy one step further and realize how reversible Asthma and COPD can be.”
“It really begins with empathy.” Louie said. “Empathy of healthcare providers for how Asthma and COPD patients suffer when they are given prescription drugs without education on an individual level. We have to ignite that empathy by increasing awareness and providing education.”
The World Asthma Foundation provides educational resources to inform patients, medical professionals and the general public about the latest clinical advances, management and treatment options for asthma disorders.
Asthma affects people of all ages and backgrounds. In most cases, it’s not known what causes asthma and there is no cure. Certain factors may make it more likely for one person to have asthma than another. If one family member has asthma, it’s likely that other family members will also have it. Regular physical exams that include checking lung function and allergies can help healthcare providers make the right diagnoses.
With a healthcare provider’s help, patients can develop their personal asthma management plan so that they know what to do based on their symptoms. It’s recommended that patients use asthma medicines as prescribed and be aware of common triggers in the environment known to bring on asthma symptoms. Triggers are smoke (including second-hand and third-hand cigarette smoke), house pets, dust mites and pollen. They should limit or avoid exposure to these and other triggers whenever possible. The important thing to remember is that individuals can control their asthma.
To learn about how World Asthma Foundation (WAF) supports Asthma education visit: http://worldasthmafoundation.org