Customer & Expert Insights

Waiting to Exhale: Adam’s Life With Asthma

by Kelly Barnett | Sep 05, 2019

Adam Greenland was seven when he was diagnosed with asthma. He’s not alone – globally over 235 million people live with asthma. He was, however, one of the lucky ones. It wasn’t a chronic condition and, from the outset, was controlled with a reliever inhaler.

“When I was a child, participating in sports was hard. I had difficulty breathing and had to stop to catch my breath all the time. I describe it as like breathing through a straw.”

- Adam Greenland

His parents took him to the doctor, and he was diagnosed and given an inhaler. The improvement was instant. From that day, Adam was in control of his asthma instead of asthma controlling him.

The first version of an asthma inhaler was introduced to the world as long ago as 1778 but it was almost a century later – in 1860 – when the inhaler began to be used as a nebulizer. It took longer still – until the 1900s – for it to become a recognized treatment.

Like many other asthma patients, Adam uses his inhaler to alleviate asthma symptoms. Now, when he does sports or a gym work-out, he uses his inhaler before he starts. He doesn’t believe in allowing asthma to be a burden, it is a condition to be controlled.

Hereditary Impact

In 2012, Adam welcomed his daughter into the world. She too has asthma – it is a hereditary condition. Does it impact his little girl? Like her dad, his daughter uses a reliever inhaler, so the impact is controllable.

“Using an inhaler becomes second nature. I keep several on the go at any one time. I always have one in the car. One in my gym bag. That would be my advice to anyone who receives a diagnosis like mine. Get control of it from the outset. Don’t let asthma change your life; make it fit into your life. It can be done. It’s an inconvenience, but if you make sure you take your medication as instructed and keep a couple of inhalers where you’re most likely to need them, it really isn’t a huge problem”

- Adam Greenland

Adam has managed to link his personal story with his career. He works at Koura, part of Orbia’s Fluorinated Solutions business group and the global leader in medical propellants, providing over 70% of the world’s asthma inhalers.

“I’m the new pharma marketing manager for Koura so, ironically, I use the medical propellents that the company creates.”

- Adam Greenland

Like Adam, over 100 million people around the world manage their asthma using solutions provided by Koura.

Asthma doesn’t just impact individuals though. In 2018, a World Health Organization study showed that over 1,000 people – in low- and middle-income countries. But economic costs of asthma don’t just negatively impact low- and middle-income countries; even in Europe the cost of work days lost to asthma amounted to 19 million Euros in 2011.

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