COPD Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease is a lung disease that is difficult to breathe normally. It’s mostly caused by smoking which damages the lungs overtime. Coughing up mucus is usually the first sign to COPD. Chronic bronchitis and emphysema are two types of COPDS.
Chronic bronchitis is the infection of the lining of the airways (bronchial tubes). When your airways are infected, less air is able to run to and from the lungs and you will cough up heavy mucus. The bronchial tubes is filled with mucus which blocks the airways, making it hard for you to breathe. Chronic Bronchitis
Emphysema Emphysema is a lung situation in which tiny air sacs in the lungs called alveoli, fills up with air. As the air maintains to build up in the sacs, they multiply and breaks or damages which forms scar tissue. The person has a shortness to breathing.
What Causes COPD? The most common cause of COPD is smoking. If you quit smoking, then it will be better. Secondhand smoking is also a cause to COPD. Breathing in pollution, the smoke others smoked around and any other irritants may contribute to COPD.
Symptoms of COPD A long lasting cough Mucus that comes out when coughing When you are exercising, there is a shortness of breath that gets worse. Weight loss Chest tightness Blueness to lips Lack of energy As this disease is getting worse day by day, you may be short of breath even doing the simplest things. It gets more difficult to eat or exercise. You often lose weight and get weak. Gradually, the symptoms get worse. This is called COPD exacerbation which means it is life threatening.
Risk Factors of COPD Exposure to tobacco smoke: Most significant risk factor People with asthma who smoke: Combination of both diseases increases risk. Occupational exposure to dust or chemicals: Long-term exposure inflames lungs. Age: Develops slowly, mostly 35-40 years Genetics: A mutation can occur, uncommon disorder.
Complications Respiratory infections such as cold, flu or pneumonia. This make it more difficult to breath and produces more damage to lungs. High blood pressure Heart problems such as a heart attack Lung cancer due to excess of smoking Depression
Test and Diagnosis Doctors recommend taking these tests Pulmonary function tests Chest X-ray CT scan Arterial blood gas analysis
Treatment and Drugs STOP Smoking as soon as possible Medications Bronchodilators Inhaled steroids Combination inhalers Oral steroids Theophylline Antibiotics Lung therapies Surgery
Prevention Do not smoke It’s better to stop smoking ASAP so it can be a little better. Avoid the bad air Airway irritants can increase the chance of COPD, better stay away from them. Flu vaccines Pneumococcal shot
Bibliography “COPD – Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease – Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment of COPD.” WebMD. WebMD, 4 May 2011. Web. 21 Aug 2013. “COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease): Medline Plus.” U.S National Library of Medicine. U.S National Library of Medicine, 16 Aug. 2013. Web. 20 Aug. 2013