Respiratory Disorder is a medical term that encompasses pathological conditions affecting the organs and tissues that make gas exchange possible in higher organisms, and includes conditions of the upper respiratory tract, trachea, bronchi, bronchioles, alveoli, pleura and pleural cavity, and the nerves and muscles of breathing. Respiratory diseases range from mild and self-limiting, such as the common cold, to life-threatening entities like bacterial pneumonia, pulmonary embolism, and lung cancer.
Obstructive conditions (e.g., emphysema, bronchitis, asthma attacks)
Restrictive conditions (e.g., fibrosis, sarcoidosis, alveolar damage, pleural effusion)
Vascular diseases (e.g., pulmonary edema, pulmonary embolism, pulmonary hypertension)
Infectious, environmental and other ""diseases"" (e.g., pneumonia, tuberculosis, asbestosis, particulate pollutants): Coughing is of major importance, as it is the body's main method to remove dust, mucus, saliva, and other debris from the lungs. Inability to cough can lead to infection. Deep breathing exercises may help keep finer structures of the lungs clear from particulate matter, etc.
HOW IS RESPIRATORY DISORDERS DIAGNOSED?
A pulmonologist would carry out tests such as a pulmonary function test to check the functioning and capacity of the lungs. Scans such as x-rays and CT scans would be advised to check for growths and tumours. Lung biopsy could be recommended.
HOW IS RESPIRATORY DISORDERS TREATED?
Treatment would depend on the cause of the respiratory disorder and would include antibiotics for infections or surgery, radiation and chemotherapy for cases of lung cancer.
DID YOU KNOW?
In developed countries the frequency of life threatening acute respiratory infections has dropped over the last 50 years. This is probably due to improved living conditions and health care.