One million affected by Asthma in Sri Lanka, 1000 deaths per year

One million affected by Asthma in Sri Lanka, 1000 deaths per year

Colombo, May 16 ( – Sri Lanka has recorded a rise in Asthma patients with at least 1 million affected by the respiratory disease and over 1000 deaths reported per year, the Government Media Information department, quoting medical experts said here Wednesday.

Respiratory Physician, Dr. Keerthi Gunasekera from The Sri Lanka College of Pulmonologists (SLCP) said the number of asthma patients in Sri Lanka was on the rise and urgent steps needed to be taken to bring the disease under control.

The disease, Dr. Keerthi explained, inflames and narrows the airways, making it difficult for patients to breathe.

He said that according to a survey carried out among 7,000 children, 25 percent of children suffered from asthma and 12 percent of them were acute sufferers of the disease.

He added 20 percent of adults also suffered from the disease.

“The situation of this respiratory disease in the country is such, that the Government should be made aware of it, so that steps could be taken to bring the situation under control. There should be special clinics and specially trained nurses to help cope with asthma patients,” Dr. Keerthi said.

SLCP Council Member, Consultant Respiratory Physician, Dr. Suharshi Silva explained that asthma was a genetic disease just like diabetes. It surfaced in environments which are conducive to it.

The possible causative factors are the presence of a virus causing a runny nose, air pollution caused by smoking, mosquito coil, vehicle, industrial smoke and dust.