World Asthma Day 2015, 5 May 2015, World Asthma Day
In the European Union women live on average five years longer than men (1) but report having lower satisfaction with their health status. The quality of life and well being women experience as they age is not always satisfactory.
Chronic diseases such as asthma can affect women and men in different ways. Alarmingly asthma rates have doubled in the last ten years and disproportionately affect women.
- female hormones,
- modern lifestyles,
- environmental changes,
can impact on the development of asthma.
During the last decade it has become apparent from research that many physiological and pathological functions are influenced by sex-based differences in biology which affects patient treatment and care
According to the European Institute of Womens Health(EIWH) Policy Brief, Women and Asthma in the EU, asthma rates increase considerably in women over 40 years old, with nearly six new cases of asthma in women to one new case in men. “Women should be aware that the fluctuation of female hormones may be as responsible for Asthma attacks as other environmental factors, such as household dust, cleaning products, perfumes, hairspray etc., causing inflammation of the airways.(2),” stated Hildrun Sundseth, President, EIWH.
“ Currently, little data collection occurs at EU level examining asthma prevalence, incidence, morbidity and mortality across the 28 Member States in comparison to other chronic diseases in Europe . Data should be collected annually at the national and EU levels on the various indicators of asthma, disaggregated by gender, age and other important factors. Regular and extensive data collection will inform government officials, policymakers, health officials and patient organisations in order to combat the rising asthma burden across the EU.(3)”, said Peggy Maguire, Director General, European Institute of Women’s Health (EIWH).
For more information please contact:
EIWH, firstname.lastname@example.org. +35 386 822 55 76
Facts from the EIWH Women and Asthma in the EU
- About thirty million people have asthma, about six million of whom have severe symptoms. In Europe, asthma is more common in females (4.3%) than in males (3.3%) ages fifteen and older with the exception of Slovenia.
- In childhood, boys have twice the rate of asthma as girls. However, the rates reverse once girls reach puberty.
- Asthma costs Europe €17.7 billion annually, including an estimated €9.8 billion annual loss in productivity from poorly controlled asthma.
The Women and Asthma Policy Brief is available here
(1) Eurostat May 2014 life expectancy at birth statistics: http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/index.php/Mortality_and_life_expectancy_statistics
(2,3) EIWH,Women and Asthma in the EU Policy Brief: https://eurohealth.ie/policy-brief-women-and-asthma-in-the-eu/