Every year, more than 3 million Americans suffer from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). The healthcare team at Premium Healthcare routinely treats chronic lung disease with innovative techniques, strategies and lifestyle modifications. If you’re suffering from ongoing shortness of breath, fatigue, and respiratory infection, call or use the online booking tool today and schedule an appointment at either the Downers Grove or Crest Hill, Illinois, office.
COPD is a form of chronic lung disease that partially restricts airflow from your lungs. If left untreated, COPD sufferers can develop a higher risk of heart disease, lung cancer, and several other serious health conditions. Inflammation of your bronchial tubes, or chronic bronchitis, and emphysema, a condition that affects your smallest air passageways, are often integral contributors to COPD.
Some of the most common signs and symptoms of COPD include:
In some cases of COPD, you may also experience unintended, dramatic weight loss. Also, if you find yourself constantly clearing your throat, that could be a sign of COPD caused by a buildup of mucus in your lungs.
The most common cause of COPD is smoking tobacco, or even exposure to secondhand smoke. An estimated 20-30% of chronic smokers develop COPD. Your lungs need their normal elasticity in order for you to breathe properly. Smoking harms your bronchial tubes and air sacs, causing your lungs to expand too much and lose elasticity.
Certain genetic disorders, as well as chronic emphysema and bronchitis, can also lead to COPD. Your age, particularly if you are over 40, and workplace exposure to burning fuels, chemicals, or dust can also increase your risk of developing COPD.
With ongoing management, COPD is treatable, and you can effectively control your symptoms. Your provider may perform lung functioning tests, chest X-rays, or even CT scans to monitor your breathing and determine whether your lungs are getting sufficient oxygen to your blood.
Your provider may prescribe medications like oral or inhaled steroids, or antibiotics to help improve your lung function and address symptoms. They can also provide light, portable units to supply supplemental oxygen during sleep or certain activities, as well as management techniques to adopt at home. Quitting smoking, or avoiding secondhand smoke, is also key to getting rid of COPD symptoms.
If you want to learn more about your treatment options, call or use the online booking tool today and schedule an appointment at either the Downers Grove or Crest Hill, Illinois, office.