Respiratory team meet shoppers to highlight COPD

Nov 21, 2018

A respiratory team from Shropshire Community Health NHS Trust were out and about in Telford today – raising awareness of a largely undiagnosed disease, COPD.

The team were at Asda this afternoon to mark World COPD Day.

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is the name used to describe a number of conditions which affect your airways, making it harder to breathe and everyday tasks a real challenge. One of the main causes of COPD is smoking.

COPD kills around 30,000 people in the UK each year. It is estimated that 3 million people have the condition but of these 2 million are actually undiagnosed, so they may not be receiving the support needed to give them the quality of life they deserve.

The main symptoms are:

  • increasing breathlessness, particularly when you're active

  • a persistent chesty cough with or without phlegm – some people may dismiss this as just a "smoker's cough"

  • frequent chest infections

  • persistent wheezing
Shoppers and visitors were encouraged to visit the stand where they were be able to receive information and advice on COPD and giving up smoking.

Sarah Paterson from the Respiratory Team said: “It was great to go to Asda today and raise people’s awareness of COPD, which is so common and yet is not understood at all well. COPD is a common condition that many people don't even realise they have to begin with. Breathing problems tend to get gradually worse over time, although treatment can help keep the condition under control.

If you are having symptoms of COPD we would advise to see your GP, particularly if you're over 35 and smoke.

Your GP can organise a breathing test to help diagnose COPD and rule out other lung conditions, such as asthma.”

Pic caption: Sarah Paterson and Sereca Hayes-Jones, Respiratory Nurses, with their information stand at Asda, Telford.