Asthma refers to a chronic lung inflammatory disease. This occurs when the airways of an affected individual react acutely to various stimuli. The number of asthmatic individuals in the US is currently 22 million, down from the 26 million recorded in 2010. As at 2010, 9.5 percent of the children’s population and 8.2 percent of the adult population were asthmatic in the US. Despite the ease with which the disease can be controlled, several people still succumb to its effects in the US annually.
For instance, in 2007, the number of those who succumbed was 3,262 while in 2009 and 2011 it was 3,388 and 3,401 respectively. Among the children, the key impacts of the disease are the fact that children miss school as they struggle to control the condition. An example is seen in the statistics by the National Center for Health Statistics which showed that 59 percent of the asthmatic children missed school in 2008 (2012).
Environmental and heredity are the most common factors that lead to asthmatic conditions in individuals. The heredity contributes through atopy, which is a condition in which an individual inherits the ability to adversely react to conventional aeroallergens through a response mediated by IgE. The environmental factors on the other hand comprise of the endotoxins, allergens and infections.
Apart from this, neurological factors may also result in asthma (Subbarao et al., 2009). Since asthma has no known cure, prevention measures are the only way to achieve control of the condition. Prevention of triggers is one of the ways in which the condition can be controlled. This can be achieved through air conditioning, keeping off dusty, closing windows during pollen seasons and avoiding smoking among other ways.
National Centre for Health Statistics. (2012). “Asthma.” Centre for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/asthma.html
Subbarao, Padmaja, Mandhane, Piush and Sears, Malcolm. (2009). “Asthma: Epidemiology, Etiology, and Risk Factors.” Canadian Medical Association Journal. Retrieved from http://www.cmaj.ca/content/181/9/E181
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