The term COPD has been used in recent years as an umbrella term for all long term restricted airways disease or Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease.
It includes emphysema, chronic bronchitis and recalcitrant asthma. In fact 1 in 7 of all adults over 40 have COPD.
COPD is a major cause of death after heart disease, stroke and cancer. COPD is preventable and treatable and is a major cause of avoidable hospital admissions. It is not a Disease that can be caught but a predisposition may be inherited.
COPD is mainly caused by smoking and lung damage, it can be caused by high levels of air pollution and secondary smoking damage, and can be linked to inappropriate treatment of asthma.
The main symptoms of COPD include:
A Physician must be consulted for advice. The lung function can be tested with a spirometer and it can distinguish COPD from asthma. Often people dismiss COPD as asthma, they both involve lung function. Asthma is due to an allergic inflammatory process, but COPD is a different form of inflammation due to infection and lung damage.
COPD is a serious lung disease and is life threatening. Follow the steps mentioned to reduce damage and slow down the progression of the disease.