Women & asthma: New survey reveals heavy toll on health, emotions and lifestyle

Immunology and an advisor to the survey. "But it doesn't have to be this way. Women should take a close look at their symptoms, raise their expectations for treatment and work with their physician to develop an effective management plan that truly gets their asthma under control."

Women falling short of asthma treatment goals

The survey reveals that many women with asthma are falling far short of treatment goals(1) established by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. According to these goals, well-controlled asthma should mean, among other things, minimal asthma symptoms and exacerbations, no sleep disruptions, no missed work or school, ability to maintain normal activity levels and no or minimal need for emergency medical care due to asthma .

Yet more than one in four women surveyed (27 percent) report coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath or chest tightness every day during the past four weeks; 39 percent say they were awakened by breathing problems at least once a week during this same time period; and 69 percent had suffered sudden, severe asthma episodes in the past year.

Poorly controlled asthma has an impact on several different aspects of a woman's life. One in three women surveyed (35 percent) say asthma has forced them to cancel or interrupt a family event, and 38 percent have had to stop playing with their children due to asthma . One third (34 percent) say asthma has caused them to leave work early. And more than three out of four (77 percent) say asthma has interfered with physical activities or exercise.

" Asthma is not typically thought of as a women's health issue, but it is all too clear that it is a major problem for women who are living with the disease," said Phyllis Greenberger, MSW, president and CEO of the Society for Women's Health Research and an advisor to the survey. "We need to do a much better job of educating women about managing asthma so that they can lead more active, healthy and

Contact: Bob Brody
Ogilvy Public Relations

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