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Chronic obstructive
pulmonary disease

A disease primarily associated with smoking

Characterized by an airflow limitation in the respiratory airways, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is the result of chronic bronchial inflammation.

The main symptom of COPD is breathlessness, which becomes more pronounced over time, contributing to a further respiratory handicap. It is accompanied by chronic coughing and sputum production. Tobacco smoke is the major factor of COPD1-2-5, although indoor and outdoor air pollution and exposure to pollutants in the workplace are also risk factors.

210 M

people affected by COPD around the world

3rd

COPD is the third leading cause of death worldwide

The third leading cause of death worldwide

COPD affects 210 million people around the world3. According to the World Health Organization, COPD is the third leading cause of death worldwide, after coronary heart disease and stroke4.

210 million people affected around the world

Acute exacerbation episodes and prolonged worsening of symptoms mark the development of the disease and accelerate the decline of the respiratory function. COPD is sometimes diagnosed during one of these exacerbation episodes.

COPD treatment options

The therapeutic strategy consists in controlling the symptoms, reducing the frequency and severity of exacerbation episodes and lowering the risks of hospitalization1-2 using the following measures:

  • Ending all exposure to tobacco or other pollutants is the prime recommendation
  • Some medications contribute to reduce inflammation and dilate the airways
  • Flu and pneumococcal vaccinations help preventing intensification episodes
  • Rehabilitation exercises help improving the physical capacity to fight the disease
  • Many COPD patients with chronic respiratory failure also benefit from long-term oxygen therapy1 and/or nocturnal ventilation4
Air Liquide Healthcare improves the patient quality of life by ensuring the compliance of the treatment.

Our commitment to patient quality of life

Together with healthcare professionals, the teams at Air Liquide Healthcare are working to develop and facilitate home healthcare services for patients with severe COPD who need respiratory assistance.

The main stake of providing this care is to improve the patient quality of life by ensuring the compliance of the treatment.

Aware of the significant public health challenge posed by COPD, Air Liquide Healthcare has signed a partnership agreement with the EFA (European Federation of Allergy and Airways Diseases Patients' Associations) to support information and awareness initiatives targeting public opinion and European institutions.

For example, Air Liquide Healthcare has supported a publication explaining the daily experience of COPD patients. This latter has been presented to members of the European Union.

Assisting patients with COPD

When prescribed by a physician, the home healthcare service provider supplies patients who suffer from associated respiratory failure with oxygen therapy and/or ventilation tailored to their individual needs. The service provider is committed to the patient to prevent exacerbations and control the progress of COPD for a better quality of life.

Throughout the treatment period, the home healthcare service provider works with prescribing physicians to support patients, help them understand their illness and complete their treatment while reinforcing the compliance.

References:

  1. Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease. Global Strategy for the diagnosis management and prevention of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Updated 2014; available at http://www.goldcopd.org/uploads/users/files/GOLD_Report_2014_Oct30.pdf
  2. ERS. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease in: European lung white book. available at http://www.erswhitebook.org/chapters/chronic-obstructive-pulmonary-disease
  3. http://www.who.int/gard/publications/chronic_respiratory_diseases.pdf
  4. http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs310/en/
  5. WHO, Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), Fact sheet N°315, January 2015. Available at http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs315/fr/; consulted on 05/11/2014.
  6. Köhnlein T, Windisch W, Köhler D ans al. Non-invasive positive pressure ventilation for the treatment of severe stable chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: a prospective, multicentre, randomised, controlled clinical trial. Lancet Respir Med 2014 ;2(9) :698-705. Available at <DOI: 10.1016/S2213-2600(14)70153-5>