Commentary

COPD—A Call to Action for Federal Practitioners

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Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of premature death in the United States. It is estimated that, directly or indirectly, tobacco is responsible for more than 400,000 deaths (nearly 20% of total deaths) annually in the United States. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) comprises approximately 60,000 of these deaths.(1) COPD is currently the fourth leading cause of death in the United States, but will rank as the third leading cause by the year 2020.(2) Because 90% of COPD is due to the inhalation of smoke from burning tobacco products, most cases of COPD are preventable.(3)


 

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