Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New data reveals public ignorance about the impact of lung disease

27.06.2012
Only 5 percent worried about lung disease, despite it being a leading cause of death

New data released by the Forum of International Respiratory Societies (FIRS) to coincide with World Spirometry Day today has revealed a worrying lack of understanding and concern among the public about the world's biggest killer - lung disease, which now claims the lives of almost 4 million people a year.

Despite the high incidence of lung disease, research conducted by YouGov across four continents revealed that people are far more worried about cancer, heart disease and stroke . This lack of concern is even more striking as data shows that while the other major diseases have been decreasing as a cause of death in the last three decades, death due to COPD has doubled in the same period.

As well as underestimating the impact of lung disease, the public poll reveals a lack of understanding about how to manage it. Despite the fact that simple lung tests like spirometry can help detect conditions such as COPD and asthma before the onset of debilitating symptoms, the survey revealed that the majority, 57%, of respondents have never had their lungs tested.

The research also revealed that 70% thought that those with lung disease were unable to undertake even moderate exercise like swimming or going to the gym. However, in reality, physical activity can help to manage and improve the symptoms of lung disease such as breathlessness, even in the most severe cases.

As the world gears up to the Olympics, FIRS is using the new data to urge people to get their lungs tested and to get active to improve their lung health. What's more, with only 41% of those already suffering from a lung disease claiming to have discussed the importance of physical activity with a healthcare professional, FIRS is encouraging current patients to approach healthcare practitioners to talk about the benefits of exercise.

On World Spirometry Day, and throughout the build up to the Olympics, healthcare professionals will be taking to the streets across the globe to run public lung testing events to raise awareness of spirometry testing. The test, which usually takes less than 10 minutes , is the most effective way of testing lung health.

The Chair of FIRS and President of the European Respiratory Society (ERS), Klaus Rabe, said:

"Chronic lung disease is a major health issue but – as the FIRS poll shows – its burden continues to be underestimated. There is widespread ignorance not only around the seriousness of lung disease but about what can be done to prevent it. As countries across the world celebrate the achievements of the world's best athletes – we feel the time is right to focus on how we can all improve our lung health.

"Respiratory physicians understand more and more about the importance of exercise but our research confirms ignorance is still out there. Even gentle walking for those with severe disease can help in improving lung capacity and general well being and we must get this message through to patients".

Monica Fletcher, Chair of the European Lung Foundation, who has co-ordinated the global initiative of WSD, said:

"World Spirometry Day provides a point in time for people to understand the importance of getting their lungs tested. Early diagnosis for lung conditions can lead to more effective interventions which, in turn can help alleviate symptoms and slow the progression of the disease."

A number of high-profile athletes are supporting the campaign, to highlight what can be achieved by those suffering from lung diseases and encourage more people to take up exercise. Some 448 competitors in the 2004 Olympics in Athens had chronic lung conditions .

Supporters include Norwegian Olympic rower, Olaf Tufte, who has won two gold and one silver medal, despite suffering from severe allergic asthma. Talking about his own experiences of lung disease, Olaf said:

"I am determined not to let my asthma limit me or restrict my ambitions. Instead, I see it as one challenge among many that I need to master in order to come top in my sport. People with lung conditions can lead healthy, active lives – if they take steps to ensure their condition is identified early enough and treated well."

For information about World Spirometry Day, and the testing events taking place in your area or across Europe, please visit: www.wsd2012.european-lung-foundation.org

For further information please contact Rakhee Shah on +44 20 7815 3900 or Rakhee.shah@munroforster.com

Vicky McGuire | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.wsd2012.european-lung-foundation.org

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht 'Living bandages': NUST MISIS scientists develop biocompatible anti-burn nanofibers
16.02.2018 | National University of Science and Technology MISIS

nachricht New process allows tailor-made malaria research
16.02.2018 | Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

Im Focus: Interference as a new method for cooling quantum devices

Theoretical physicists propose to use negative interference to control heat flow in quantum devices. Study published in Physical Review Letters

Quantum computer parts are sensitive and need to be cooled to very low temperatures. Their tiny size makes them particularly susceptible to a temperature...

Im Focus: Autonomous 3D scanner supports individual manufacturing processes

Let’s say the armrest is broken in your vintage car. As things stand, you would need a lot of luck and persistence to find the right spare part. But in the world of Industrie 4.0 and production with batch sizes of one, you can simply scan the armrest and print it out. This is made possible by the first ever 3D scanner capable of working autonomously and in real time. The autonomous scanning system will be on display at the Hannover Messe Preview on February 6 and at the Hannover Messe proper from April 23 to 27, 2018 (Hall 6, Booth A30).

Part of the charm of vintage cars is that they stopped making them long ago, so it is special when you do see one out on the roads. If something breaks or...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Fingerprints of quantum entanglement

16.02.2018 | Information Technology

'Living bandages': NUST MISIS scientists develop biocompatible anti-burn nanofibers

16.02.2018 | Health and Medicine

Hubble sees Neptune's mysterious shrinking storm

16.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>