For many years they do not know that they are sick and do not understand what the disease is. As a result, they overuse emergency medications and do not use those that treat inflammation. – This increases the risk of complications such as hypertension, stroke, heart attack, and shortens life. The respiratory system supplies the body with oxygen. If you are sick, other organs are also affected, especially the heart, says Dr. Piotr Dąbrowiecki, an internist and allergist.
Katarzyna Pinkosz, Wprost: 2 million people in Poland suffer from asthma. These are shocking data…
Dr. Piotr Dąbrowiecki: 2 million are diagnosed. What scares me more is the fact that in addition to these 2 million people diagnosed, another 2 million have undiagnosed asthma. They don’t know they are sick; they think it’s a cold, an infection. However, if someone has six “infections” a year without fever, lasting longer than 10 days, accompanied by cough and shortness of breath: it may be asthma. Sometimes, when the disease worsens, pneumonia is suspected, but the X-ray results are normal.
Unfortunately, only every second person in Poland with asthma is correctly diagnosed.
This is not the end of shocking data. The report of the Polish Society of Allergology shows that 2/3 of doctors do not respond to patients abusing bronchodilators, the so-called rescue drugs.
Short-acting bronchodilators are rescue medications. A person suffering from asthma should not use more than two packages a year. Meanwhile, in Poland the average is 3.66 packages per year, and 6%. People with asthma taking medications from this group consume over 12 packages a year!
What does this result in?
Typical symptoms of asthma are: cough, wheezing, and shortness of breath. If the inflammation in the lungs increases, the mucous membrane swells and the bronchi contract. A person suffering from asthma is no longer able to breathe normally. To be able to breathe normally, he must give himself a drug that will dilate the bronchi. It is a rescue, short-acting drug that must be taken in case of shortness of breath.
Does the patient feel relieved then?
Awhile. These drugs have a short-term effect: they dilate the bronchi, but only for a few hours. Then they shrink again. If a patient with asthma does not take anti-inflammatory drugs (inhaled steroids), he or she will increasingly need to use bronchodilators.
What’s wrong with that?