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Emphysema

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  • Emphysema

    Emphysema is a form of chronic (long-term) lung disease. People with emphysema have difficulty breathing from a limitation in blowing air out. There are multiple causes of emphysema, but smoking is by far the most common. Emphysema is one of the main types of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). It’s called “obstructive” because people with emphysema exhale as if something were obstructing the flow of air. The other form of COPD is chronic bronchitis, which can also be caused by smoking. Although emphysema has no cure, quitting smoking reduces the speed at which the disease gets worse.
  • Emphysema

    Emphysema gradually damages the air sacs (alveoli) in your lungs, making you progressively more short of breath. Emphysema is one of several diseases known collectively as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Smoking is the leading cause of emphysema. Your lungs' alveoli are clustered like bunches of grapes. In emphysema, the inner walls of the air sacs weaken and eventually rupture creating one larger air space instead of many small ones. This reduces the surface area of the lungs and, in turn, the amount of oxygen that reaches your bloodstream. When you exhale, the damaged alveoli don't work properly and old air becomes trapped, leaving no room for fresh, oxygen-rich air to enter.

  • Emphysema

    Treatment may slow the progression of emphysema, but it can't reverse the damage. You can have emphysema for many years without noticing any signs or symptoms. The main symptom of emphysema is shortness of breath, which usually begins gradually. You may start avoiding activities that cause you to be short of breath, so the symptom doesn't become a problem until it starts interfering with daily tasks. Emphysema eventually causes shortness of breath even while you're at rest. Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease symptoms are as follows: Coughing up more mucus than usual. A change in the colour or thickness of that mucus. More shortness of breath than usual. Greater tightness in your chest. These attacks are most often caused by infections-such as acute bronchitis and pneumonia-and air pollution. Work with your doctor to make a plan for dealing with a COPD flare-up. If you are prepared, you may be able to get it under control.
  • Emphysema

    Try not to panic if you start to have a flare-up. Quick treatment at home may help you manage serious breathing problems. Globally, as of 2010, COPD affected approximately 329 million people (4.8% of the population). The disease affects men and women almost equally, as there has been increased tobacco use among women in the developed world. The increase in the developing world between 1970 and the 2000s is believed to be related to increasing rates of smoking in this region, an increasing population and an aging population due to less death?s from other causes such as infectious diseases. Some developed countries have seen increased rates, some have remained stable and some have seen a decrease in COPD prevalence. The global numbers are expected to continue increasing as risk factors remain common and the population continues to get older. Emphysema can't be cured, but treatments can help relieve symptoms and slow the progression of the disease.

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