COLOMBO, May 16 (Xinhua) -- Sri Lanka has recorded a rise in asthma patients with at least 1 million affected by the respiratory disease and over 1,000 deaths reported per year, the government media information department quoting medical experts said here on Wednesday.
Respiratory Physician Dr. Keerthi Gunasekera from the Sri Lanka College of Pulmonologists (SLCP) said the number of asthma patients in Sri Lanka was on the rise and urgent steps needed to be taken to bring the disease under control.
The disease, Dr. Keerthi explained, inflames and narrows the airways, making it difficult for patients to breathe.
He said that according to a survey carried out among 7,000 children in the country, 25 percent of the children suffered from asthma and 12 percent of them were acute sufferers of the disease.
He added 20 percent of adults also suffered from the disease.
SLCP Council Member and Consultant Respiratory Physician Dr. Suharshi Silva explained that asthma was a genetic disease just like diabetes, and it surfaced in environments which are conducive to it.