A short note from Dr. David Wang on World Asthma Day: 

Today is World Asthma Day, an annual event focused on raising awareness of asthma worldwide which was started by the Global Initiative for Asthma 28 years ago. According to the World Health Organization (WHO) it was estimated that more than 339 million people had Asthma globally in 20161. Whilst asthma cannot be cured, it’s important those who suffer know how to manage it to reduce and prevent asthma attacks.

The theme for this year’s World Asthma Day is ‘Uncovering Asthma Misconceptions’ to address misconceptions concerning asthma. The top misconceptions associated with asthma include2:

  1. Asthma is a childhood disease; individuals will grow out of it as they age.
  2. Asthma is infectious.
  3. Asthma sufferers should not exercise.
  4. Asthma is only controllable with high dose steroids.

The Truth is:

  1. Asthma can occur at any age (in children, adolescents, adults and elderly).
  2. Asthma is not infectious. However, viral respiratory infections (such as common cold and the flu) can cause asthma attacks. In children, asthma is frequently associated with allergy, but asthma which starts in adulthood is less often allergic.
  3. When asthma is well controlled, asthma subjects are able to exercise and even perform top sport.
  4. Asthma is most often controllable with low dose inhaled steroids.

If you don’t suffer from asthma, the chances are someone you know will, so it’s important that we break away from these assumptions and ensure that those who suffer with asthma have all the correct information and services easily available to them. - Dr. David Wang, Associate Medical Director APAC, Global Solutions

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Resources: 

1 https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/asthma#:~:text=It%20was%20estimated%20that%20more%20than%20339%20million%20people%20suffer%20from%20asthma.&text=Asthma%20 is%20the%20most%20common,deaths%20occur%20in%20older%20adults. 
https://ginasthma.org/wad/