News Release

Friday, January 12, 2007

NHLBI Introduces New Campaign on Little Known Fourth Leading Cause of Death In United States

COPD Affects One in Four Americans Over Age 45.

What: COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) is the fourth leading cause of death in the U.S. and is expected to be the third leading cause of death by 2020. An estimated 12 million Americans are diagnosed with COPD and an additional 12 million are believed to have the disease, but are not yet diagnosed.

In conjunction with the launch of a new national awareness and education campaign on COPD, the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) of the National Institutes of Health, in partnership with the COPD community, is sponsoring a panel discussion to highlight the problem of COPD and provide an update on current research and future treatments. Patient advocates, leading physicians, and scientists will discuss the growing burden COPD places on the individual, the family and society and how the science has informed the art of caring for the whole patient with COPD.

Following brief remarks on COPD and the campaign, there will be a question and answer session with the speakers.

Who: Elizabeth G. Nabel, M.D., Director, NHLBI
James Kiley, PhD., Director, Division of Lung Diseases, NHLBI
Grace Anne Dorney, COPD Patient

Scientific Presenters
A. Sonia Buist, M.D., Oregon Health Sciences University
Bartolome Celli, M.D., St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center, Tufts University, Boston
Ronald Crystal, M.D., Weill Medical College of Cornell University

Campaign Partners
Butch Pallay, MD, Board Member, American Academy of Family Physicians
David Ingbar, MD, President-elect, American Thoracic Society
Terri Weaver, PhD, Board Chair, American Lung Association
Mark Rosen, MD, President, American College of Chest Physicians

When: January 18, 2007
9:00 a.m. — 11:00 a.m. ET

Where: Holeman Lounge, National Press Club

For more information about the COPD campaign, please visit,

Part of the National Institutes of Health, the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) plans, conducts, and supports research related to the causes, prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of heart, blood vessel, lung, and blood diseases; and sleep disorders. The Institute also administers national health education campaigns on women and heart disease, healthy weight for children, and other topics. NHLBI press releases and other materials are available online at:

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit

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