Stockholm, Sweden, November 16, 2016 – Tens of millions of people around the world suffer from Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), a life-threatening lung disease that encompasses several conditions such as emphysema and chronic bronchitis. WHO believes COPD kills three million people every year and will become the third leading cause of death worldwide by 2030.
“Traditionally COPD has been seen as a result of smoking tobacco, but that view is changing with indoor air pollution increasingly being blamed,” said Bengt Rittri, founder and CEO of Blueair, a leader in indoor air cleaning technologies. Bengt was speaking on World COPD Day, which is organised by the Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD) with the aim to raise awareness of COPD and improve patients’ care throughout the world.
COPD develops slowly and is most frequently diagnosed in people aged 40 years or over who may suffer an increased risk for cardiovascular diseases, osteoporosis, respiratory infections, diabetes, anxiety and depression, and lung cancer. Symptoms may include a chronic cough, sputum production, difficult or labored breathing and a history of exposure to risk factors for the disease, according to WHO.
Key ways to manage COPD include reducing exposure to tobacco smoke, occupational dust and chemicals, and indoor and outdoor air pollutants. Other steps encompass preventing the progression of the disease in a sufferer, relieving symptoms and improving daily health and exercise regimes.
Beyond the suffering of individuals, the cost to society is enormous. According to the Forum of International Respiratory Societies (FIRS), the total economic costs in the U.S. alone were estimated to be approximately US$50 billion in 2010.
“Governments and health authorities around the world need to step up their efforts to widen awareness of the disease and the fact that it nowadays is just as likely to be sparked by air pollution as smoking tobacco,” said Bengt Rittri.
For more information, please contact: David Noble, Blueair head of global PR, +44 7785 302 694 or firstname.lastname@example.org