Respiratory diseases remain a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in the Philippines, with pneumonia, COPD, all forms of tuberculosis and other lung infections affecting millions of Filipinos at present.
Asthma, a major noncommunicable disease (NCD), is one of the most prevalent health conditions in the country. About 21 million Filipinos suffer from asthma. The country ranks second in asthma mortality worldwide across all ages, with deaths caused by it accounting for 2.37 percent of total deaths in the country.
Asthma can affect people across all ages, but it is most common among children. Besides breathing difficulties, its effects include trouble sleeping, fatigue and poor concentration. On top of the health and wellness concerns, long-time care can negatively impact one’s financial well-being.
So, what can be done to help patients with asthma, especially this Lung Month?
Easing the burden of asthma
There is still no cure for asthma, unfortunately. But effective management can help control the symptoms so that asthma patients can enjoy an active, normal life.
“Long-term control medications are definitely important in managing asthma. But knowing that asthma attacks can be sudden, the most reliable solution is quick-relief medications,” said Dr. Dex Macalintal, a registered nutritionist-dietitian and one of the pioneers of lifestyle medicines in the Philippines. “One of the most-recommended ways for quick relief and to address asthma symptoms is the use of nebulizers at home.”
Dr. Mitch Syquia, a pulmonologist-pediatrician and former chief resident of the Department of Pediatrics at Perpetual Help Medical Center, shares the same view. “Having a nebulizer unit and medication at home makes a lot of difference, particularly for children with asthma. Besides giving quick relief, this reduces and even eliminates the need to go to the hospital or seek emergency assistance during asthma exacerbations. This is why I always tell my pediatric asthmatic patients and their families to do at-home nebulization,” she said.
OMRON Healthcare, one of the most-trusted brands for clinically proven medical equipment among Filipinos, has long been an advocate of accessible health management and solutions. In its commitment to promote awareness for at-home nebulization and in celebration of this year’s Lung Month, Omron has announced a price cut of P300 on its nebulizer products in line with its Relax Ka Lungs campaign. The promotional pricing on select OMRON nebulizer products will be in effect until October 31, 2022.
Also as part of OMRON’s Relax Ka Lungs campaign, both Dr. Dex Macalintal and Dr. Mitch Syquia delved deeper into asthma management in an episode of OkiDoc livestreamed on August 26, 2022 via the official Facebook pages for OMRON Healthcare and Hello Doctor, and YouTube page of Dr. Dex Macalintal. During the show, viewers were given the chance to raise questions about and discuss lung-related concerns with the experts.