Between 3 and 7 million Americans are currently diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and the true prevalence is probably greater than 16 million (1). Many of these individuals suffer years of progressive discomfort and disability. With the number of deaths per year attributed to this disease at approximately 100,000 and increasing, COPD is now the fourth leading cause of death in this country (2) and is expected to be third by the year 2020. Cigarette smoking is firmly established as the major cause of COPD, but approximately one-quarter of Americans continue to smoke, despite aggressive smoking prevention and cessation efforts. Better means are clearly needed for the prevention and treatment of COPD, and more scientific research is needed to enable improvements in its clinical management.
Item No.: 01-COPDFUTURERESEARCH
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Format: Use for E-ITEMs with no NHLBI pub number: Black + White
Audience: Health Professionals
Date of Publication: 2001