Thursday

23rd Jan 2020

Stakeholder

Life is possible for patients with severe asthma

  • Around 5-10% of asthma patients are dealing with severe asthma. (Photo: EFA)

On World Asthma Day, European asthma patients are joining voices under the theme "Never too early, never too late" to ask for more research on the causes of asthma. Patients should be able to receive a more accurate diagnosis to enable them to have better lives.

Although most patients are able to control their asthma with current treatments, the basic solutions do not help all patients.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or join as a group

Around 5-10% of asthma patients are dealing with severe asthma, a set of different disease sub-types that greatly complicates breathing every day. The disease can, without warning, put people off work and in hospital because of asthma attacks that can be fatal.

New disciplines and technology allow asthma to be broken down, taking a deeper look into the underlying mechanisms causing it. Some developments have been made to better and more clearly definition what severe asthma is. There have also been development of more targeted treatments and approaches to control some sub-types of severe asthma.

EFA President Mikaela Odemyr said: "We hope all asthma patients are controlled in the near future and that is why we have launched our Severely, Asthma! Project, featuring patients who have experience living with severe asthma and solving the impacts this disease has in their daily life".

It is the case of Peter, our first Severely, Asthma! patient. After 60 years of struggle with severe asthma, he can finally manage the disease thanks to new treatments and partnership with specialists that has helped him prevent asthma attacks in the last 2 years.

No cure has been found for asthma yet. But scientists have clarified now there is not one but several asthmas, a complex inflammatory disease that behaves differently depending on how genes, proteins, or exposure to environmental factors harmful to human health, interlink.

The combinations are infinite and that explains why the healthcare community is taking asthma and allergies as pilot diseases for the development of personalised medicine.

A healthcare system that embraces patients, treating individuals instead of diseases, might be starting now with personalised medicine. The approach looks at different elements involved in the disease and the patients' lifestyle and environment to better predict disease behaviour and treatments that work.

Personalised medicine allows people to participate in the management of their health by having access to information about disease prevention and treatment.

Yet, to set this new paradigm, patients must be at the centre of the process and become active partners to innovate in the development of medicines and how healthcare systems are structured.

Author bio

The European Federation of Allergy and Airways Diseases Patients' Associations (EFA) is an alliance of over 30 allergy, asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patients' associations, representing 30% of European citizens currently living with these diseases.

Disclaimer

This article is sponsored by a third party. All opinions in this article reflect the views of the author and not of EUobserver.

Focus

Air pollution, Europe's largest environmental health hazard

While the health of hundreds of thousands of Europeans' are affected each year by air quality issues, the EU and its member states struggle to implement and comply with legislation that aims to reduce air pollution.

Focus

Allergic disease and asthma on the rise in Europe

The number of Europeans with allergies has been growing extensively since the mid-1950s. Although some European countries have reached a peak, the overall number of citizens with allergic diseases continues to grow.

Ending HIV/AIDS: A tale of two Europes

World AIDS Day (Sunday 1 December) is both a time to celebrate the advancements across western Europe and a time for decisive action to address disparities in HIV care in eastern Europe and central Asia.

News in Brief

  1. UK watchdog unveils online child-privacy standards
  2. Alleged 'bully' nominated for EESC presidency
  3. Greens/EFA fail to agree on accepting Catalan MEPs
  4. MEPs approve over 55 gas projects for EU funding
  5. Italy deputy PM Di Maio quits as Five Star party leader
  6. EU investment bank to keep pressure on Turkey over gas
  7. 'Rare' migrant boat from Belgium to UK sinks
  8. First annual rule of law report expected this year, Reynders said

Stakeholders' Views

This EUobserver section provides a platform for EU stakeholders to communicate positions, views and activities.

Brussels welcomes Nordic culture

Brussels will play host to more than 400 Nordic artists and creative practitioners this autumn, organised by one of Europe's most influential cultural institutions, BOZAR.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of Ministers40 years of experience have proven its point: Sustainable financing actually works
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic and Baltic ministers paving the way for 5G in the region
  3. Nordic Council of MinistersEarmarked paternity leave – an effective way to change norms
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Climate Action Weeks in December
  5. UNESDAUNESDA welcomes Nicholas Hodac as new Director General
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersBrussels welcomes Nordic culture

Latest News

  1. EU warned on 'vigilance' after Davos spy fail
  2. What's Libya's impact on EU foreign policy?
  3. EU commission 'lacks ambition' on future conference
  4. Will US privacy-lite hollow out GDPR?
  5. Senior Polish member at EU body faces Belgian abuse probe
  6. Why isn't Germany helping gay rights in Hungary, Poland?
  7. US retiree, scammed by former EU official, awaits justice
  8. Vienna-Brussels night train returns amid EU green talk

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us