Airway diseases being underrated, says expert


‘Lung diseases should be diagnosed at an early stage for effective treatment’

Asthma, bronchiectasis, and other diseases affecting the lungs were discussed on the second day of the joint national conference of Indian Chest Society and National College of Chest Physicians (NAPCON).

Addressing the session on airway diseases, Dr. Peter Howarth, professor of Allergy and Respiratory Medicine, University of Southampton, said the prevalence of airway diseases was underrated. Asthma, COPD, and bronchiectasis have to be diagnosed at an early stage for effective treatment and care.

“Airway diseases occur in a number of forms. Conditions and components leading to chest tightness, wheezing, dyspnoea, cough, and sputum are all non-specific. They can also exist in various combinations,” he said.

He added that since most airway diseases shared common characteristics, expert consultation was required to identify the issue and to choose proper therapy.

Dr. C. Ravindran, former Principal, Government Medical College, Kozhikode, spoke about measures to control asthma, a common chronic respiratory condition causing inflammation of the airway resulting in breathing difficulty.

Patients with persistent asthma can be treated effectively with inhalers, nebulisers, and other medications. Efforts should be made to find out and avoid potential allergens and maintain good personal and environmental hygiene, Dr. Ravindran said. It has been found that discontinuance of medicine leads to more frequent and severe asthma attacks, he added.

The conference will take up various public health issues like smoking, respiratory failure, respiratory care, adaptation for high altitude, tuberculosis, pneumonia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, critical care and rehabilitation.

The conference is hosted by the Kerala chapter of Indian Chest Society, Academy of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, and Cochin Thoracic Society.

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Printable version | Jan 27, 2020 5:59:30 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/airway-diseases-being-underrated-says-expert/article30055923.ece

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