Nemocné plíce Evropy

Respirační choroby představují hlavní příčinu úmrtí na světě a jejich výskyt stále stoupá. Podle Světové zdravotnické organizace bylo ze všech 50,5 milionů úmrtí zaznamenaných v roce 1990 plných 9,4 milionu způsobeno právě respiračními chorobami. V roce 2020 pak bude ze 68 milionů úmrtí připadat 11,9 milionu na chronickou obstrukční plicní nemoc (COPD), zápal plic, rakovinu plic nebo tuberkulózu (TBC).

Evropa si v tomto ohledu vede jen o málo lépe než zbytek světa. Respirační choroby se co do úmrtnosti, incidence (nárůstu počtu případů za rok), prevalence (celkového výskytu onemocnění) a nákladů řadí na druhé místo (za choroby kardiovaskulární). V některých zemích, jako je Velká Británie, jsou již dnes hlavní příčinou úmrtí.

Evropská bílá kniha o plicních chorobách , kterou v roce 2003 vydaly Evropská respirační společnost a Evropská plicní nadace, přinesla vůbec poprvé epidemiologické údaje pro celé spektrum plicních onemocnění, shromážděné ze všech evropských zemí. Poskytuje tak podrobný přehled o vývoji plicních chorob v Evropě, včetně údajů o chorobnosti, úmrtnosti a nákladech.

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