Nav: Home

Study: Almost 100 million adults have COPD in China

April 09, 2018

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is widespread in China with 8.6 percent of the country's adult population - almost 100 million people -suffering from the chronic lung disease, according to a new Tulane University study published in The Lancet.

The study, which provided lung-function screenings for more than 50,990 participants, is the largest survey of COPD across age groups ever conducted in China, researcher say.

COPD, an inflammatory lung disease that causes obstructed airflow into the lungs, is the third leading cause of death in China. It is caused by long-term exposure to irritants in the air, including cigarette smoke. During the past decade, ambient air pollution has become a major public-health crisis in the country while cigarette smoking remains high, especially among men, says senior author Dr. Jiang He, Joseph S. Copes Chair of Epidemiology at Tulane University School of Public Health & Tropical Medicine.

"Our research shows that COPD is highly prevalent in the Chinese adult population. The biggest preventable risk factors for the disease are cigarette smoking and air pollution," He says. "Prevention programs and increased efforts to catch COPD early should be public-health priorities in China to reduce COPD-related diseases and deaths."

The study found that men had a higher prevalence (11.9 percent) of COPD than women (5.4 percent). The sex difference was noted among all age groups in the general population and even among those who never smoked.

Based on the lung-function screenings, researchers estimated the total number of individuals aged 20 years or older with COPD in China was 99.9 million in 2015. Of these, 68.4 million were men and 31.5 million were women.

Researchers found that most people with COPD were unaware of their condition, and few had received a pulmonary function test prior to the study. Only 2.6 percent of participants were aware of their condition, and only 12 percent of those found to have COPD reported getting a previous pulmonary function test.

Researchers found COPD prevalence increased with age. It was 2.1 percent for individuals aged 20-39 years old compared to 13.7 percent for those aged 40 years or older. The disease was more common for rural residents (9.6 percent) than for those in urban areas (7.4 percent). The same trend was noted among non-smokers.

Researchers suspect that those who didn't smoke developed COPD due to other risk factors or environmental exposures such as air pollution, chronic cough during childhood, parental history of respiratory diseases, low bodyweight and low education.

The study calls for new national public health strategies to prevent COPD that include smoking cessation programs, stricter control of ambient air pollution and biomass use, and COPD screenings for high-risk individuals using pulmonary function tests.
-end-


Tulane University

Related Air Pollution Articles:

Air pollution may disrupt sleep
High levels of air pollution over time may get in the way of a good night's sleep, according to new research presented at the ATS 2017 International Conference.
Smoking out sources of in-home air pollution
An ambitious study led by San Diego State University researchers has investigated various factors that contribute to air pollution inside the house.
Cities need to 'green up' to reduce the impact of air pollution
The harmful impact of urban air pollution could be combated by strategically placing low hedges along roads in a built-up environment of cities instead of taller trees, a new study has found.
Study measures air pollution increase attributable to air conditioning
A new University of Wisconsin-Madison study shows that the electricity production associated with air conditioning causes emissions of sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides and carbon dioxide to increase by hundreds to thousands of metric tons, or 3 to 4 percent per degree Celsius (or 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit).
Air pollution may lead to dementia in older women
Tiny air pollution particles -- the type that mainly comes from power plants and automobiles -- may greatly increase the chance of dementia, including Alzheimer's disease.
More Air Pollution News and Air Pollution Current Events

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Anthropomorphic
Do animals grieve? Do they have language or consciousness? For a long time, scientists resisted the urge to look for human qualities in animals. This hour, TED speakers explore how that is changing. Guests include biological anthropologist Barbara King, dolphin researcher Denise Herzing, primatologist Frans de Waal, and ecologist Carl Safina.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#534 Bacteria are Coming for Your OJ
What makes breakfast, breakfast? Well, according to every movie and TV show we've ever seen, a big glass of orange juice is basically required. But our morning grapefruit might be in danger. Why? Citrus greening, a bacteria carried by a bug, has infected 90% of the citrus groves in Florida. It's coming for your OJ. We'll talk with University of Maryland plant virologist Anne Simon about ways to stop the citrus killer, and with science writer and journalist Maryn McKenna about why throwing antibiotics at the problem is probably not the solution. Related links: A Review of the Citrus Greening...