The Herald Banner, Greenville, TX

Top News

March 16, 2013

The high cost of COPD

state health officials: Hunt County smokers at increased risk for deadly respiratory disease

GREENVILLE — It is well-known that habitual smoking can lead to lung cancer, heart attacks and other serious health conditions.

But a new side effect of smoking has quickly climbed the charts and become the third leading cause of death in America.

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is a disease that deteriorates the lungs and causes shortness of breath, wheezing and frequent respiratory diseases.

Smoking is a leading cause of COPD, making up 80 percent of all cases.

According to Bill Ruth, public health nurse for the Hunt County Health Department, with a high population of Hunt County residents who smoke, COPD is on the rise.

“It’s a huge problem,” he said.

Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) released statistics showing that Hunt County averages 219 cases per year. The average five-day hospital stay costs residents more than $19,000 per person.

The older population is being hit hardest by the disease, with patients aged 60-79 making up 62 percent of hospital stays.

Ruth said the population in south Hunt County, at 34 percent, is facing a more than average rate of COPD cases.

“Quinlan has the lions share of the COPD and Bacterial Pnemonie because there are a lot of smokers in that area,” he said.

Scientists are researching why women who smoke account for 60 percent of all COPD cases.

COPD is incurable, but there are ways to stem off or slow down the rate of infection.

For smokers with COPD, Ruth said the first thing to do is to seek help to quit smoking, and to get in contact with a doctor who can help treat the disease.

Ruth said that often people wait too long to get help with this dangerous disease.

“Once people start having the kind of problems with COPD that result in hospitalization, their life expectancies drop significantly,” he said.

1
Text Only
Top News
  • Vaderrobot.jpg Dallas champions, Robowranglers look forward

    Practicing with the best hones skills and keeps members of Greenville High School Robowranglers on point, according to Director of Robotics Adrienne Emerson.
    The Robowranglers are preparing their robot “Vader” for the FIRST World Championships in St. Louis on April 23-26.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Texas drougnt as of 4-17-2014.jpg Wet Easter Sunday possible

    It may be a wet Easter holiday in North Texas, as thunderstorms are again in the forecast for the weekend.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sheriff's Office Wanted fugitive captured in Ellis County

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Band1.jpg Roaring with pride

    The Greenville High School Lion Pride Band performs well under pressure, according to GHS band director Joel Weisburg

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Royce Tawater.jpg Shooting suspect changes mind on guilty pleas

    On second thought, a local man will leave it up to a jury to decide whether he is guilty of multiple charges in connection with two shootings in Greenville last summer.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Easter Eggstravaganza stork photo.jpg A hunting we will go

    There will be lots of brightly colored eggs hidden in the grasses across Hunt County this weekend, and plenty of opportunities for children to find them.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • GEUS Operations Center.jpg Saying thanks to police

    The board of the local electric utility system intends to take time tonight to thank officers with the Greenville Police Department for catching suspects who allegedly broke into the company’s headquarters last month.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Field.jpg GISD trustees approve replacing track, turf

    When the Greenville High School football team takes the field in August, they will be marching out onto new turf.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Royce Tawater.jpg Guilty pleas expected in July 2013 shootings

    A  Greenville man, sentenced to state prison earlier this year on a weapons charge, is scheduled to plead guilty today to multiple counts involving two different shootings in July 2013.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • GPD stock photo.jpg Guilty plea given in child injury case

    A local woman has pleaded guilty to seriously injuring a child in Greenville in February of last year.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

House Ads
Featured Ads
Poll

What's your favorite spring high school sport?

Swimming and diving
Wrestling
Basketball
Soccer
Tennis
Golf
Track and Field
Softball
Baseball
     View Results
Facebook
AP Video
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Real Estate News