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Many people unaware of lung disease prevalence

Posted On Wed, July 18, 2012

The Forum of International Respiratory Societies released a report that showed that many people are not informed when it comes to lung diseases and this could affect their ability to deal with the illnesses and get them treated.

Having lungs tested for illnesses can reveal conditions at an early onset, well before it becomes an issue, the report said. However, close to 60 percent of those polled have not gone for an exam. Spirometry, which is a simple way of testing lungs for illness, can detect serious ailments such as asthma and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).

In addition, 70 percent incorrectly thought those with a lung disease are unable to exercise or be active. In reality, exercise helps improve lungs in many situations. The report explained that close to 4 million people around the world are killed by the disease every year, but many consumers are more concerned about other issues such as cancers, heart ailments and strokes.

"Chronic lung disease is a major health issue but - as the FIRS poll shows - its burden continues to be underestimated," said Klaus Rabe, chair of FIRS. "There is widespread ignorance not only around the seriousness of lung disease but about what can be done to prevent it.

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