Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), has now been identified as the most dangerous and deadliest non-communicable disease, which is worse than heart attack, stroke, road traffic accidents and cancer. Senior respiratory physician and Head of Breath Easy Clinic at Apollo Hospitals Group, India, Dr R.P. Ilangho, noted that these are the five world’s deadly diseases which go in this order, heart attack, stroke, road traffic accidents and cancer but COPD tops the list now.

He said: “All of us know about heart attacks, strokes, road accidents and cancers but I bet you 10 in hundreds may only know about COPD. “COPD is so dangerous. The point is that the other four diseases, like cancer, strokes, road accidents and heart attacks happen by themselves – by lifestyle, genetics or nature. But the irony of this COPD is that it is strictly man-made. If you don’t smoke, you can never get COPD and your children cannot get it either. If there is no air-pollution in the world, there would not be any COPD.”

Ilangho also said that, among the top five killer diseases, COPD is a totally preventable disease which doesn’t require treatment because if one does not smoke cigarette or get exposed to air pollution, COPD will never happen. “But when it comes to you, it is dangerous and can be thought of as one of the most dangerous things to ever happen to anybody’s life because it can kill the victim,” he said.

The expert further advised that though COPD is a totally preventable killer disease, which is inherited through smoking and air pollution, the first treatment for it is to stop smoking and get out of air pollution. He added that unlike asthma which is genetic, COPD is totally man-made and preventable. “Asthma, too is not something to worry about. It is known by many names like allergic bronchitis, wizzy bronchitis; sometimes they say I just have a cough and a cold just to mask that they have asthma,” he said.

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