Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Burden of COPD is higher than thought and will increase as world population ages

31.08.2007
Higher levels and more advanced stages of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) occur worldwide than previously thought. This burden will increase as the world’s population continues to age, conclude authors of an Article in this week’s edition of The Lancet.

Dr Sonia Buist, Oregon Health & Science University, Oregon, USA and colleagues did a study of 9,425 people aged 40 years and over from 12 different countries around the world (the BOLD study). They found that the prevalence of stage II or higher COPD, as confirmed by spirometry testing, was 10.1% overall, broken down into 11.8% for men and 8.5% for women. A recent careful meta-analysis of COPD prevalence studies reported the incidence of stage II COPD to be 4.3%. The authors say: “Our estimates of the overall prevalence and staging of COPD are consistently higher than these figures, which accord with claims that COPD has generally been underestimated in the past.”

The authors add that the growing COPD burden is partly due to the aging population (with risk nearly doubling for every 10 years over the age of 40), and partly due to continuing use of tobacco, which is the most important risk factor. The variation in COPD prevalence between men and women is due mostly to differences in smoking habits. There were wide variations of COPD in the 12 worldwide sites, with Cape Town, South Africa recording the highest prevalence of combined stage II and III (men 22.2%, women 16.7%), and Hannover, Germany recording the lowest prevalence (men 8.6%, women 3.7%). The authors suggest the high rates in South Africa could be due to very high reported levels of previous tuberculosis and additional occupational exposures.

The authors conclude: “Although smoking cessation is becoming an increasingly urgent objective for an aging worldwide population, a better understanding of other factors that contribute to COPD is crucial to assist local public-health officials in developing the best possible primary and secondary prevention policies for their regions.”

In an accompanying Comment, Dr Emiel Wouters, Department of Respiratory Medicine, University Hospital Maastricht, Netherlands, says: “With quantitative data already available, it is already clear that COPD is a major disease worldwide. Recognition of this fact obligates us to make efforts towards increasing public awareness and efforts toward the adoption of an integrated approach aimed at reducing or stabilising the present and future burden of disease generated by COPD.”

In a related Review, Dr Buist and Dr David Mannino, University of Kentucky College of Public Health, Lexington, Kentucky, USA look at risk factors, prevalence and future trends of COPD. They say: "Worldwide, tobacco smoke remains the most important cause of COPD." WHO estimates that in high-income countries, 73% of COPD mortality is related to smoking, with 40% related to smoking in nations of low and middle income. They add: "Furthermore, smoking during pregnancy can negatively affect fetal lung growth and result in development of lung disease."

Ageing is also a risk factor for COPD, with lung function starting to decline from its peak in young adulthood to lower levels in later life. The authors

say: "In looking to the future, one cannot ignore the changing demographics of the world's population and the reality that COPD is a disease of ageing." Such is the effect of the world's aging population on COPD prevalence, that the authors say: "Furthermore, if every smoker in the world were to stop smoking today, the rates of COPD would probably continue to increase for the next 20 years." The effects of occupational dust, vapours and fumes, infections, and asthma are also studied in the Review.

The authors conclude: "The challenge we will all face in the next few years will be implementation of cost-effective prevention and management strategies to stem the tide of this disease and its cost."

Tony Kirby | alfa
Further information:
http://multimedia.thelancet.com/pdf/press/internationalvariation.pdf

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht New discoveries predict ability to forecast dementia from single molecule
12.12.2018 | UT Southwestern Medical Center

nachricht Pain: Perception and motor impulses arise in the brain independently of one another
12.12.2018 | Technische Universität München

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: Lethal combination: Drug cocktail turns off the juice to cancer cells

A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth – this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel’s Biozentrum two years ago. In a follow-up study, recently published in “Cell Reports”, the scientists report that this drug cocktail induces cancer cell death by switching off their energy supply.

The widely used anti-diabetes drug metformin not only reduces blood sugar but also has an anti-cancer effect. However, the metformin dose commonly used in the...

Im Focus: New Foldable Drone Flies through Narrow Holes in Rescue Missions

A research team from the University of Zurich has developed a new drone that can retract its propeller arms in flight and make itself small to fit through narrow gaps and holes. This is particularly useful when searching for victims of natural disasters.

Inspecting a damaged building after an earthquake or during a fire is exactly the kind of job that human rescuers would like drones to do for them. A flying...

Im Focus: Topological material switched off and on for the first time

Key advance for future topological transistors

Over the last decade, there has been much excitement about the discovery, recognised by the Nobel Prize in Physics only two years ago, that there are two types...

Im Focus: Researchers develop method to transfer entire 2D circuits to any smooth surface

What if a sensor sensing a thing could be part of the thing itself? Rice University engineers believe they have a two-dimensional solution to do just that.

Rice engineers led by materials scientists Pulickel Ajayan and Jun Lou have developed a method to make atom-flat sensors that seamlessly integrate with devices...

Im Focus: Three components on one chip

Scientists at the University of Stuttgart and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) succeed in important further development on the way to quantum Computers.

Quantum computers one day should be able to solve certain computing problems much faster than a classical computer. One of the most promising approaches is...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

ICTM Conference 2019: Digitization emerges as an engineering trend for turbomachinery construction

12.12.2018 | Event News

New Plastics Economy Investor Forum - Meeting Point for Innovations

10.12.2018 | Event News

EGU 2019 meeting: Media registration now open

06.12.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

New discoveries predict ability to forecast dementia from single molecule

12.12.2018 | Health and Medicine

CCNY-Yale researchers make shape shifting cell breakthrough

12.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Pain: Perception and motor impulses arise in the brain independently of one another

12.12.2018 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>