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COPD                                                                                         
 
C-CHRONIC – LONG STANDING                  
 O-OBSTRUCTIVE – BLOCKAGE                   
 P-PULMONARY – IN LUNGS                          
 D-DISEASE – ILLNESS 
                    

COPD and ILD are irreversible diseasesCOPD and ILD cause a lot of damage to our lung tissues, making life hell for the people who suffer from them. Reasonably good long life can be lead but only with active and timely medical help, management with good diet and exercise schedule by the person involved, support and understanding of the family.

  Indians do have the poorest lungs among 17 populations across four continents, according to new research that has stirred speculation that the health effects of air pollution in India may be worse than actually suspected.

But Why?
“Poor air quality could explain this ‘ many years of breathing polluted air could
impair lung functions,” said Kiruba Shankar, an epidemiologist at the St John’s
Medical College, Bangalore, and a member of the study team.                                     

                              

The study did not look into exposure to air pollutants. So the effects of
maternal and child nutrition, which can also influence lung health, cannot be
ruled out yet, Shankar told The Telegraph. Latest studies do point at the fact
that increased cases of lungs related diseases are associated with child
malnutrition, weak and early motherhood in girl child.

   “The gains some of our cities have made by switching to compressed natural
gas and introducing vehicular emission standards are being eroded by the
rising number of vehicles,” said Anumita Roy Chowdhury, deputy director of the CSE.  
And while COPD is primarily linked to smoking, we also encounter patients with COPD who have never smoked in their lives,” said Salvi. “India has a huge inventory of potential lung irritants that we routinely encounter in the city air or inside our homes, traffic and industry emissions, biomass and wood burning,
incense sticks, and Diwali crackers.” This is a part of the article published on
sept.1 2011 by www.telegraphindia.com. Biomass fuel smoke is bigger risk
factor for COPD than tobacco smoking.

In 2010 almost 24 million adults over age of 40 in India had COPD. Data monitor expects this no. to increase by 34%to approximately 32 million by 2020.

What about ILD?

ILD
 I-INTERSTIAL
 L-LUNG
 D-DISEASE

     Whenever one wants to find out about ILD, one can only find published data
from west. In my research I found abstract of an article by Tiyas Sen and Zakir.F.Udwadia Department of Pulmonary Medicine P.D.Hinduja National
Hospital and Medical Research Centre Mumbai. I am writing a part of it here,
“There is lack of data on ILD in India where these disease is under
estimated and remain under diagnosed and under reported for various reasons”.

     This is probably due to lack of awareness among the physicians and lack of
availability of diagnostic modalities like Computed Tomography(CT),
Bronchoscopy, Video-Assisted Thoracoscopic Surgery(VATS) and high cost
involved in getting these investigations done.

Tuberculosis (TB) mimics some of the ILDs like Sarcoidosis, leading to
diagnostic errors and delays. Thus the incidence of ILD’s in developing
countries has been considerably under estimated.”

Therefore reported numbers may not be there but India being a large
developing country has all the right ingredients where there are many suffering
from ILD. 

   I was working as a social worker for lungs patients at Fortis Escorts, New
Delhi and people suffering from ILD are fairly common. Precautions are never taken into considerations when earning a living is concerned in India. It is extremely difficult to make people understand the importance of rules and
precautions related to health.

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