COPD Treatment at Pulmonary Associates
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is a progressive lung disease that makes it difficult to breathe and is unfortunately very common. In fact, there are more than 3 million new cases of COPD each year in the US. It occurs most often in adults over the age of 40.
COPD is actually some combination of these two distinct lung diseases:
- Emphysema: Over-inflation and damage to the air sacs in the lungs, which reduces the surface area of the lungs, resulting in less oxygen reaching the bloodstream. Exposure to airborne irritants such as cigarette smoke, pollution, or chemical fumes can cause emphysema.
- Chronic Bronchitis: Repeated inflammation and irritation of the lining of the airways (bronchial tubes). It can lead to a buildup of mucus, which can restrict airflow for months or years. Chronic bronchitis is a serious condition that worsens over time. It is most commonly caused by cigarette smoking.
Many people with chronic bronchitis go on to develop emphysema, and the two together are considered the most common type of COPD.
Asthma is a risk factor for COPD. It is believed to be caused by genetic and environmental factors. Environmental triggers vary from person to person and may include dust, mold, pet dander, cigarette smoke, and more. Asthma causes the airways to become inflamed and narrowed, leading to recurring episodes of wheezing, chest tightness, and coughing at night or early in the morning.
These conditions create an obstruction of air in and out of the lungs, resulting in the classic COPD symptoms of breathlessness, a chronic cough with mucus, and wheezing.
Although there is no cure for COPD, at Pulmonary Associates in Southern Nevada, we are experienced in diagnosing and managing COPD symptoms with medications, pulmonary rehabilitation, and supplemental oxygen – among other therapies.
Find out more about COPD and whether you may be one of the millions of American adults who have the disease and are unaware of it. Call Pulmonary Associates at (702) 384-5101 today to make your appointment, or feel free to use our convenient online appointment request form.