Asthma sufferers get relief in the West Bank

August 15, 2010 ANERA
Health, In-Kind Medical and Relief, West Bank
ANERA in-kind program delivers meds for West Bank asthma patients. ANERA in-kind program delivers meds for West Bank asthma patients.

Treating asthma patients has become a bit easier in the West Bank, Palestine thanks to a recent donation of much-needed inhalers. “Asthma is a chronic disease that affects people of all ages,” says Dr. Wael Al-Rajabi of Hebron’s Medical Center.

Eighty-year-old Hajj Issa knows that all too well. A couple of years ago, he walked into Dr. Al-Rajabi’s office short of breath and wheezing. He was panicked, not knowing what had caused his chest to tighten. Dr. Al-Rajabi immediately suspected he had asthma and ran a few tests to be certain. Since then he has been treating Hajj Issa to keep the asthma under control. A supply of medications, such as inhalers donated by AmeriCares and delivered by ANERA, is making that task a lot more manageable.

Al-Rajabi explains, “Asthma’s causes may be hereditary or due to allergies, but there may also be a combination of different factors. It’s basically a lung disease that causes breathing irritations due to tightening and inflammation of the airways, usually when exposed to airborne elements like pollen and smoke, or when performing physical activity.”

80-year-old Hajj can finally breath easy

Inhalers and other asthma medicines are delivered to people in the West Bank.

Asthma is not curable but medications and inhalers like those donated by AmeriCares through ANERA’s West Bank in-kind program, can help the patient keep his condition under control. “Mr. Issa has dramatically improved with the inhaler. He tried several asthma medications but this inhaler has helped him the most, and he uses it on a daily basis,” says Dr Al-Rajabi. “What is most important for someone of Mr. Issa’s age, is the inhaler contains Antrovent, which prevents bronchospasm.”

Hajj Issa smiles with relief, “I feel comfortable using this inhaler. Whenever I experience symptoms like chest tightness and shortness of breath, I can use it and feel better within a few minutes. I am so grateful for the donation because I could not afford it and would not have survived without it.”

The donation of inhalers is being provided free to hundreds of low-income asthma patients, so asthma relief in the West Bank is finally in reach.

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