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More and more people with chronic bronchitis
In Baden-Württemberg, more and more people are suffering from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), colloquially better known as smoker's cough.
Six million Germans affected As reported by the state representative of the Techniker Krankenkasse (TK) Baden-Württemberg in Freiburg on Friday, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), colloquially known as smoker's cough, is now a common disease. Around six million people, up to 15 percent of adults in Germany, are affected. The TK relies on figures from the Federal Statistical Office in Wiesbaden.
Third leading cause of death in Europe According to the information, more than 17,500 patients diagnosed with COPD were treated in hospital at the TK 2011 in Baden-Württemberg. That was 37 percent more than five years earlier. The World Health Organization (WHO) expects COPD to become the third leading cause of death after heart disease and stroke in Europe by 2020.
Many lung diseases among the most common causes of death Among the top ten most common causes of death worldwide, there are a conspicuously large number of lung diseases. The current WHO list of causes of death in 2011 states that lung infections were third, chronic lung diseases fourth, and tracheal / lung cancer was seventh. Heart diseases such as heart attacks and strokes are still top of the list. Common to all diseases is that smoking plays an important role in this.
Main cause of smoking According to the TK message, the main cause of smoking is also for COPD. Ninety percent of the COPD patients are or were smokers and one in two of the smokers over 40 years of age have chronic bronchitis. Despite smoking bans and better education, the numbers would continue to rise, especially among women. The disease has a long lead. Typical initial symptoms are persistent cough, recurrent bronchitis and increasing shortness of breath under stress. (ad)