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Galway University Hospitals to mark World COPD Day

World COPD Awareness Day takes place on Wednesday 20 November and to support this event the Respiratory Services at Galway University Hospitals (GUH) are holding an information day from 10:00am to 4:00pm in the main foyer of University Hospital Galway. Staff from GUH Respiratory Services will be on hand to answer your questions and help you to learn more about COPD.
COPD is a general term for a number of chronic lung disorders including bronchitis, emphysema and chronic obstructive airway disease. It is estimated that 440,000 people in Ireland suffer from COPD and the most common cause of COPD is smoking. If COPD is detected early, treatments are available to prevent further deterioration of lung function.
GUH Consultant Respiratory Physician Dr Rutherford says, “The early stages of COPD are often unrecognised, but it is easy to determine whether a person is at risk. At the information day next Wednesday we will have a simple questionnaire that people can fill out and which will determine their risk and whether or not they need to follow up with their GP for further tests.
“Early detection and intervention is extremely important in order to improve symptoms and increase the patient’s quality of life and slow down the damage to the lungs. One of the greatest challenges for people with COPD is not knowing they have it until it’s at an advanced stage. I would urge any smoker or former smoker aged over 40 who has difficulty breathing to get a lung test. When properly diagnosed and treated, patients with COPD can look forward to a marked improvement in their quality of life with a decline in symptoms such as breathlessness and less frequent ‘flare-ups’.
“The theme for this year’s World COPD Day is ‘It’s not too late’ and I would encourage anyone who would like more information on COPD to come to the information day or to talk to their GP.”