Entries in COPD (4)


Lifetime Risk for COPD Higher than Heart Failure, Common Cancers

Stockbyte/Thinkstock(TORONTO) -- COPD: chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. It's a disease that affects your air passages, causing difficulty breathing, and now a new study suggests COPD is a greater threat than heart disease or cancer.
COPD covers a range of diseases that restrict the function of your lungs, such as chronic bronchitis and emphysema.
Symptoms include difficulty breathing, wheezing, shortness of breath and chronic coughing that produces mucus. It is sometimes mistakenly thought to be a "smoker's cough."
A new study in the medical journal Lancet shows that one in every four people 35 and older are likely to develop COPD in their lifetime, comparable to diabetes and asthma.
Researchers at the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences in Toronto followed 13 million Canadians for up to 14 years.
They found the risk of getting COPD was double that of congestive heart failure, three to four times greater than breast cancer in women and prostate cancer in men and more than seven times the risk of other cancers.  
By 2030, COPD is projected to be the third-most common cause of death worldwide.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Risk of Death Higher in COPD Patients Using Spiriva Mist Inhalers

Spike Mafford/Thinkstock(BALTIMORE) -- A recent review of published studies found that mist inhalers containing Spiriva are linked to a 52-percent higher risk of death for people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), reports HealthDay News.

Although the drug in the soluble mist form is approved for 55 other countries, it is not yet available in the United States.  COPD patients in the U.S. can, however, find the powdered form to be commonly used.

In the study, researchers at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine looked at five published studies covering more than 6,500 patients.  Comparing the Spiriva mist inhaler with a placebo, they found that those using the Spiriva inhaler were 52 percent more likely to die than those using the placebo inhaler.  Dr. Sonal Singh, the lead author on the study, attributed the increased risk to cardiovascular disease.

"What we think is going on is that the mist inhaler is delivering a higher concentration of tiotropium than it should and that may be increasing the risk of death," Singh commented in a news release.

Despite the Spiriva mist's inaccessibility in the U.S., American regulators should be considerate of the study's findings, says Dr. Mark Rosen, director of pulmonary rehabilitation at Long Island Jewish Medical Center and North Shore University Hospital in Long Island, N.Y.

The study's findings are featured online in the British Medical Journal.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Rheumatoid Arthritis Patients More Likely to Develop COPD

Stockbyte/Thinkstock(LONDON) -- A new study finds that rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients are two times more likely to develop the breathing disorder called chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Researchers from Israel presented their findings at the European League Against Rheumatism annual conference in London.  

RA is an autoimmune disease that causes pain and swelling in the joints as well as other parts of the body such as the lungs or mouth.

With data from Clalit Health Services, the largest healthcare provider in Israel, the researchers were able to compare the information of nearly 16,000 RA patients over the age of 20.  Each participant was matched for age and gender with the study, including over 15,000 healthy controls such as smoking, lifestyle habits or obesity.

They found that COPD showed up in 8.9 percent of RA patients compared with only 4.4 percent in the healthy controls.

"We know that similar changes in core physiological processes cause symptoms in RA and COPD, and we hope that the results of our study prompts new research into potential links between altered genetic and autoimmune processes in the two conditions," said researcher Dr. Howard Amital of the Sheba Medical Centre in Israel.

Because these findings presented at the conference have not yet been published in a peer-reviewed journal, it should be considered preliminary.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Researchers Link Periodontal Health to Respiratory Illnesses

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(CHICAGO) -- New research published in the Journal of Periodontology suggests that periodontal disease may increase risk for respiratory infections such as chronic pulmonary disease (COPD) and pneumonia. 

Periodontal disease is a chronic inflammatory disease which affects gum tissue and other structures supporting the teeth.  Respiratory infections like pneumonia or COPD occur when bacteria from the upper throat are inhaled into the lower respiratory tract.  Researchers infer that oral pathogens associated with periodontal disease increase the risk of developing respiratory illnesses.

Donald S. Clem, DDS, the president of the American Academy of Periodontology, emphasized the importance of proper oral care to prevent or treat the development of periodontal disease.

"By working with your dentist or periodontist, you may actually be able to prevent or diminish the progression of harmful diseases such as pneumonia or COPD," he said.  "This study provides yet another example of how periodontal health plays a role in keeping other systems of the body healthy."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio