Describe The Main Limitations Suffered By Those With Chronic

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One of the major public health problems facing Australia today is Asthma. It is disturbing that there has been an apparent increase in its prevalence and severity, and increased rates of hospital admissions. (E.J.Comino, 1996) For the diagnosed patient, the degree to which he or she suffers is related to severity of the condition, compliance with recommendations by medical experts, the immediate environment and the effectiveness of education programs.
Like other major health problems, asthma has varying degrees of symptoms. As such, the degree and frequency of the symptoms limits many aspects of the asthmatics life. To describe the main limitations suffered by those with chronic asthma, asthma must be defined.
Asthma is a condition whereby the sufferer has difficulty breathing due to widespread narrowing of the airways of the lungs. This narrowing can be caused by a local inflammation of the air-ways, muscle contraction or the production of excess mucus with in bronchi. (R.Roberts, 1996) Most common is bronchial asthma. Medical definitions of asthma suggest that environmental triggers can substantially contribute to the occurrence of an asthma attack. The review of asthma in Victoria (1988) by the Asthma Foundation of Victoria outlined infection, exercise, climatic conditions, exposure to airborne irritants and emotional upsets as the main trigger factors. However, doctors use a general classification to identify a patients pattern of asthma…classifying people who experience some symptoms of asthma on most days as having a chronic asthma condition. The classification system also extends to the categories of children, occupational asthma and asthma in later life. Usually regular medication is required to keep the lungs functioning as normally as possible. Some chronic asthmatics have severe symptoms over a long period of time and may require long term or indefinite medication to be able to lead a normal life. (Lane, 1996)
The most obvious limitations suffered relate to the asthmatics physiological dysfunction. However, physiological dysfunction can in turn contribute to greater social and psychological limitations. This area is related more specifically to quality of life and morbidity and will be discussed further on. The main physiological limitation is related to the presence of the bronchial narrowing slowing the movement...

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...ciated with the effectiveness of asthma education programs. And hence secure the continuation and development of asthma education in the community.

References:

1 Asthma Foundation of Victoria, Review of Asthma in Victoria, 1988.

2 Beilby JJ,Wakefield MA, Ruffin RE, Reported use of Asthma Management plans in Australia, Medical Journal of Australia, 1997; 166: 298 – 301.

3 Comino E J, Asthma Management in eastern Australia, 1990 and 1993, Med J Aust, 1996; 164:403-406

4 Elizabeth J Comino, Medical Journal of Australia: Asthma Management in eastern Australia, 1990 and 1993. MJA, 1 April 1996.

5 Global Strategy for Asthma Management and Prevention NHLBI/WHO Workshop, National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute January 1995; Publication Number 95-3659

6 Lane Donald J, Asthma the Facts, Oxford university Press, 1996.

7 National Asthma Campaign. Asthma deaths fall but death rate remains unacceptably high. Melbourne: National Asthma Campaign, 31 December, 1998. Media release.

8 National Asthma Campaign. Implementation Plan, 1999 http://www.nationalasthma.org.au/nacsi/index.html

9 Woolcock AJ, Rubinfield AR, Seale JP, et al. Asthma Management Plan 1989. Med J Aust 1989; 151:650-653.

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