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Goulet's Life Lost to Untreatable Lung Disease That Claims as Many Lives as Breast Cancer Each Year
Date:10/31/2007

Urgent Need for Increased Awareness of Disease, Funding for Research

SAN JOSE, Calif., Oct. 31 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Actor Robert Goulet was unfortunately one of 40,000 people in the U.S. who will lose their lives to idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) this year, the same number as will die from breast cancer. Yet, most people have never heard of IPF until someone they love is diagnosed.

IPF has no FDA approved treatment, no known cause and no cure. As in Goulet's case, most patients won't receive a potentially life saving lung transplant in time. In fact, approximately 50 percent of IPF patients who are on a lung transplant list will pass away before a donor lung becomes available.

More than 128,000 people suffer from IPF in the United States, and prevalence and incidence of the deadly disease has increased more than 150 percent in just five years.

"Our sympathies go out to the Goulet family. We know first hand the tragedy of IPF," said Mark Shreve, chief executive officer of the Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis (CPF). "It is devastating news to IPF patients and their families that viable treatments for IPF still do not exist. We desperately need to increase awareness of IPF and fund research that will lead to new treatments, and ultimately a cure."

"Pulmonary Fibrosis remains an extremely frustrating disease for researchers," said Kevin K. Brown, M.D., senior author of the study and vice chair of medicine at National Jewish Medical & Research Center in Denver. "The devastation it causes to patients and their families only amplifies the urgency we feel as we study the disease. While we have made some progress over the last decade, it is not nearly enough."

About Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF)

IPF is a lung disorder characterized by a progressive scarring - known as fibrosis - and deterioration of the lungs, which slowly robs its victims of their ability to breathe. Approximately 128,000 Americans suffer from IPF, which is the most prevalent of a classification of lung disorders known as interstitial lung diseases (ILD's). There is currently no known cause or cure for IPF, nor is there an FDA-approved treatment. An estimated 48,000 new cases are diagnosed each year. IPF is difficult to diagnose, and an estimated two-thirds of patients die within five years of diagnosis.

About the Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis

The Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis (CPF) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, founded in 2001 to accelerate research efforts leading to a cure for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF), while educating, supporting, and advocating for the community of patients, families, and medical professionals fighting this disease. The CPF funds promising research into new approaches to treat and cure pulmonary fibrosis; provides patients and families with comprehensive education materials, resources, and hope; serves as a voice for national advocacy of IPF issues; and works to improve awareness of IPF in the medical community as well as the general public. The CPF's nonprofit partners include many of the most respected medical centers and healthcare organizations in the U.S. With more than 14,000 members nationwide, the CPF is the largest nonprofit organization in the U.S. dedicated to advocating for those with pulmonary fibrosis. For more information please visit http://www.coalitionforpf.org or call (888) 222-8541.


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SOURCE Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis
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