IPF Walk for Breath shows support for those living with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF)
TORONTO, Sept. 26, 2013 /CNW/ - In recognition of Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) Awareness Month and IPF World Week, Torontonians joined the Canadian Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation (CPFF) today for the IPF Walk for Breath. Gathering on the east corner of Elm Street and University Avenue, Torontonians lent their lungs to do something that many Canadians with IPF can't - walk to Queen's Park and blow bubbles.
"On behalf of all Canadians affected by this devastating disease, I'd like to thank those who participated in today's IPF Walk for Breath," said Robert Davidson, president and founder, CPFF. "The Walk was held during IPF World Week with the hope of continuing to raise awareness of IPF and the need for access to treatment, as well as show support for those living with this rare, progressive and fatal lung disease."
To mark IPF Awareness Month, the CPFF and members of the IPF community attended Queen's Park on September 11 to discuss the current challenges faced by patients, and to urge the Ontario Ministry of Health to provide publicly-funded access to Esbriet (pirfenidone), the first and only treatment approved in Canada for people living with mild to moderate forms of the disease.
Despite the severity of IPF and the absence of other treatment options, the Common Drug Review (CDR) recommended that public drug programs not fund Esbriet, keeping it out of reach for many of those who need it. However, Esbriet is publicly funded and accessible to IPF patients in Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Norway, Sweden and the United Kingdom.
About IPF in Canada
Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is an interstitial lung disease with no known cause. Studies suggest that up to 30,000 Canadians are believed to be affected by all forms of pulmonary fibrosis, with an estimated 3,000 to 5,000 suffering from mild to moderate forms of IPF. The disease affects all races and ages but is usually diagnosed between the ages of 40 and 80 years, with a life expectancy of just two to five years. In patients with IPF, the lung tissue becomes scarred and over time, as the scarring becomes thicker and more widespread, the lungs lose their ability to transfer oxygen into the bloodstream. As a result, patients become short of breath and the brain and vital organs are deprived of the oxygen necessary for survival. IPF has a higher mortality rate than many other malignancies, including pancreatic, lung and liver cancers.
About the CPFF
The Canadian Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation (CPFF) is a registered not-for-profit charitable organization established to provide support, hope and resources for those people affected by pulmonary fibrosis. Robert Davidson, president of the CPFF, who had IPF and received a double lung transplant in January 2010, founded the organization in 2009 to help support and educate others, and to answer non-medical questions frequently asked by those suffering with the disease. For more information, please visit www.cpff.ca.
Image with caption: "In recognition of Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis Awareness Month and IPF World Week, Torontonians joined the Canadian Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation at the IPF Walk for Breath today. The group walked down hospital row to Queen's Park blowing bubbles to show support. (CNW Group/Canadian Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20130926_C4982_PHOTO_EN_31432.jpg
SOURCE: Canadian Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation
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