Asthma Strikes Rock and Republican Heavyweights

SRxA’s Word on Health was reminded last week about the dangers of asthma. By some bizarre coincidence, two heavyweight celebrities suffered acute asthma attacks just hours apart last Thursday.  First, New Jersey Governor and rumored presidential candidate Chris Christie was struck by an attack, en route to a press conference.  When his rescue inhaler didn’t do the trick he was taken to hospital by state troopers and spent the afternoon undergoing a number of tests. After being released Christie told the press that he believed his attack was brought on by the recent extreme heat and humidity

Just hours later, Meat Loaf, collapsed at the Trib Amphitheater in Pittsburgh following a rendition of his hit, “I’d Do Anything for Love (But I Won’t Do That).”  He explained what happened to the audience later in the show saying: “I have asthma, I can’t breathe.”  Meat Loaf recovered and went on to his next performance which by  a further twist of coincidence just happened to be in New Jersey.

Maybe we shouldn’t be surprised.  After all, every day in America:

  • 40,000 people miss school or work due to asthma.
  • 30,000 people have an asthma attack.
  • 5,000 people visit the emergency room due to asthma.
  • 1,000 people are admitted to the hospital due to asthma.
  • 11 people die from asthma.

An estimated 20 million Americans suffer from asthma. The prevalence of asthma has been increasing since the early 1980s across all age, sex and racial groups and is the most common chronic condition among children.

Asthma accounts for one-quarter of all emergency room visits in the U.S. each year, with 2 million emergency room visits.  Each year, asthma accounts for more than 10 million outpatient visits and 500,000 hospitalizations. There are more than 4,000 deaths due to asthma each year, many of which are avoidable with proper treatment and care. In addition, asthma is indicated as a “contributing factor” for nearly 7,000 other deaths each year.

After his asthma attack, Christie said “I feel a sense of urgency with the stress level of my job to take care of it.

Words to live or sing by!