(WZAW) -- Living with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD, affects nearly every aspect of daily life. Yet, nearly half of the 27 million living with the condition wait years before receiving a proper diagnosis and managing symptoms.
The symptoms – feelings of breathlessness or shortness of breath – can worsen over time and potentially lead to hospitalization and even death. In fact, COPD is the fourth leading cause of death in the U.S. and a major cause of disability.
There is a tremendous need to prioritize care for those with COPD and treat this disease consistent with other illnesses. Nine out of 10 people with COPD admit they are not completely open with their doctor when discussing their symptoms. Even more concerning, one in four patients hospitalized for a COPD flare up die within a year.
While many people with COPD accept breathlessness and difficulties completing daily activities as part of normal aging, these can be a sign of COPD disease progression and should be discussed with a physician. So, what should people living with COPD do? There is a need to speak openly about the impact that COPD symptoms have on day-to-day life.
In recognition of COPD Awareness Month, pulmonologist and COPD expert with GSK, Dr. Tom Corbridge, and Candyce Norris, who is living with COPD, joined the Deep Bench on Friday to discuss the importance of having an open conversation with a healthcare provider about COPD symptoms and how expecting more of a management plan can help potentially improve long-term care.
Visit www.COPD.com for additional information and resources that patients and their loved ones can use to better manage COPD.