Custom «Does Civilization Cause Asthma?» Essay Paper Sample

Does Civilization Cause Asthma?

Asthma has been a threat to the lives of many not just in America, but all over the world. Statistics form the US epicenter of asthma, the Bronx; show that the rate of death from the disease is three times high at the Bronx as they are in the whole of the US. In this article, the author uses the experiences of some medical practitioners to bring out the effects of asthma.

The article shows that asthma claims more than 5,000 lives in America every year, a number that may appear small when compared to other diseases but its effects on the health of people are enormous. It is a complication common in children causing many childhood hospitalizations and loss of school hours. Millions of dollars are used every year to control and prevent. All these have made many scientists to engage in efforts to find out why the disorder is so prevalent. Scott is not among these scientists, his is to treat and help those with the disease. According to Scott, the fumes that come from the heavy traffic that plies in the Bronx, is responsible for the poor health of many of his patients, a sentiment that he shares with many clinicians that the author consulted. But previous studies have shown contradictory results, which air pollution does not cause asthma but can only trigger symptoms in victims. In the US, asthma is common in poor regions like the Bronx, where infrastructural facilities are lacking (Shell, 2000).

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According to Rosenstreich, a professor of medicine and an expert on asthma allergens, cockroaches are the cause of asthmatic symptoms in victims. That children in families infested with cockroaches face high chances of having asthma attacks that are brought about by the exposure they have on cockroaches. That poor ventilation, water damage, and uncontrollable heating systems, are some of the factors that are associated with asthma. He claims that carpets, upholstered furniture, and piles of cloth are breeding grounds of many things. In the US therefore asthma is considered a disease that is associated with richness. This is because studies have shown low cases of asthma in third world countries as compared to developed countries, although again this is subject to debate (Shell, 2000).

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Because asthma had not been known for a long time, research was starts just some decades back, and so far scientists believe that its is caused by the prevention of the immune system to develop properly in the early stages of life. Martinez, a pediatrician, believes asthma is caused by the modern way of life. He says, "Your immune system develops through experience" (Shell, 2000). This is why those kids with frequent illness rarely get asthma, those in poor countries, unlike the affluent who are always protected from infection. Genetic factors are also cited as possible cases of asthma attacks in the US. This was confirmed by studies done by Carol Ober, a professor in human genetics on a group of people called the Hutterites of South Dakota. She found out that although all the factors that have been seen to cause the disorder appear to be absent from the environment of these people, they still went ahead to get asthma, leaving genetic causes as the only cause. Although asthma in these people is usually mild as compared to other groups, it is said that living close to nature and away from the world's stress reduce its intensity. Many causes have been cited by many professional among them, not being active, type of diet and many others (Shell, 2000).

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Treating this disorder according to Rich, a pediatrician, requires collaboration between a physician and a patient so that a treatment plan can be developed. There are those patients who will not stick to the prescription simply because they think they can't stand it. People should stay in clean environments, eat well and exercise their bodies. The author thinks that unless the health care system in US is configured to provide more than palliative care, then asthma will continue being a menace (Shell, 2000).

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