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03 May 2023 by lbilh

World Asthma Day 2023

Asthma remains a common chronic disease. About 4.3% of the total world population is affected by asthma. In Austria, according to the data of the Austrian LEAD study, it is 4.4% (of the general population studied, women and men, 6 – 80 years). In children, asthma was and is the most common chronic disease of all.

Now there is a decisive new option in the therapy of this respiratory disease: whereas in the past oral steroids with all their side effects were mostly used for severe asthma, these can and should be avoided in the future thanks to new therapy options with biologics. To make this possible, the therapy of uncontrolled (= symptomatic) asthma absolutely belongs in the hands of specialists.
The lung function testing of the LEAD study shows us a holistic picture of the lungs. In this way, diseases such as COPD or asthma can be detected. During the examinations, lung volume, respiratory flow rate and narrowing of the airways are measured, among other things.

Assoc. Prof. Robab Breyer-Kohansal, MD, scientific director of the LEAD study: “We can use a series of non-invasive measurements and blood findings to determine exactly which asthma the respective patient has. This is the only way we can offer these innovative, tailored therapies in a timely manner.”

The publication from Caspar Schiffers, PhD with the title “Prevalence of restrictive lung reaction in children and adults in the genereal population” aims to examine the prevalence of asthma in the Austrian general population and to better understand how differential asthma phenotypes present itself. The findings reveal that the prevalence of asthma is 4.6%, which fit well with the global prevalence rates. Furthermore, asthma phenotypes were age-dependent: there was a shift from allergic to non-allergic asthma with increasing age, with a non-eosinophilc asthma being more prominent. Lastly, we observed that asthma has major association with body composition.