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 Lung Disease: an Appeal

                              October 2006


Lung Disease: an Appeal

  • Three million people across the UK suffer from lung disease.
  • The Department of Health has recently announced a new 19-strong team of advisors made up of health professions, service users, carers and health service managers.
  • The proposal should provide more choice in treatment, reduce inequalities in care and improve standards for patients, especially those with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).

What is COPD?

It is a term used for a number of conditions, including chronic bronchitis and emphysema. COPD leads to damaged airways in the lungs, causing them to become narrower and making it harder for air to get in and out of the lungs. The word ‘chronic’ means that the problem is long-term.

Smoking is the primary risk factor for COPD. Approximately 80 to 90 per cent of COPD deaths are caused by smoking. Female smokers are nearly 13 times as likely to die from COPD as women who have never smoked. Male smokers are nearly 12 times as likely to die from COPD as men who have never smoked.

Other risk factors of COPD include air pollution, second-hand smoking, a history of childhood respiratory infections and heredity.

There is no cure for COPD, but a lot can be done to relieve its symptoms. Stopping smoking will help, while some people with COPD develop low blood oxygen levels and the use of oxygen at home can be beneficial.


Pulmonary Hypertension

This is a rare lung disease (only 4,000 cases in the UK). PH is not precisely a COPD condition, as it involves the right side of the heart as well. PH consists of high blood pressure and also structural changes in the walls of the pulmonary arteries that connect the right side of the heart to the lungs. The extra stress causes the heart to enlarge and become less flexible. Less and less blood is able to flow out of the heart, through the lungs, and into the body.

Until very recently PH was untreatable, except for a very small number of patients who received a heart and lung transplant. Untreated, the disease has a worse prognosis than most forms of cancer, with a mortality rate of 40% per year. Today, with proper diagnosis, there are currently several therapies to alleviate symptoms and improve quality of life for PH patients. But there is no cure.

In one of those “stranger than fiction” coincidences, two of our laterlife contributors suffer from PH. So we want to start a fundraising project by collecting recipes as well as donations, something practical that would help PH sufferers of all ages. The PHA (Association) will print the recipe booklet for distribution to all patients. Celebrity chefs have been asked to contribute and Gordon Ramsey has already sent in a special recipe.

Symptoms of PH include extreme fatigue, so quick and easy recipes are needed, as are recipes that can be made in larger quantities to be frozen individually for use on bad days. Depending on their medication, patients are not allowed added salt and must enjoy/endure a healthy, low-fat diet. Other restrictions are minimum quantities of garlic or ginger and no cranberries, grapefruit/juice, liquorice or papaya.

Recipes and/or donations would be greatly appreciated, before the end of October.

Please address your recipes to:

PHA-UK Appeal c/o or see her webpage:-  

And send cheques payable to: PHA-UK, The Brampton Centre, Brampton Road, Wath Upon Dearne, Rotherham, South Yorkshire S63 6BB

More information is available at:  .
PHA is a registered charity, number 1082613.




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