COPD or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is one of those lung diseases that does not exist in a vacuum. It is associated with at least one or two comorbid conditions like pulmonary hypertension, osteoporosis, dementia, anaemia , hypertension, coronary artery disease (CAD) and depression. It is necessary to seek treatment on time to prevent the aggravation of the condition and development of these comorbid conditions.
An emergency action plan has been devised for air pollution in Delhi. The Central Pollution Control Board has launched the Air Quality Prediction System that would forecast the air condition of the next 72 hours. This system would forecast for various areas and localities of Delhi and neighbouring regions like Ghaziabad, Gurgaon, Rohtak, etc.
This pollution forecast system is based on the real-time observation of air quality using satellites. Satellites measure details of Aerosols like SO2, NO2, Dust, and particulate matter (PM10 and PM 2.5).
People can access air quality early warnings through the media corner of the CPCB website. It includes large-scale alerts on air pollution that may occur in Delhi.
How Is 72-Hour Pollution Forecast System Beneficial?
This new 72-hour Pollution Forecast System not only helps the general population prepare for bad-air days but also help enforcement agencies to gear up to take defensive action and warnings. For example, enforcement agencies may decide in advance to implement the Odd-Even system for cars, or put a halt on construction activity, or other remedial measures.
Diseases Caused by Pollution
Most respiratory diseases are caused by air pollution, some of which are:
Asthma: Asthma is one of the most common diseases that is caused by external and internal air pollution. In this chronic disease, inflammation and blockage occur in the air passage of lungs. Asthma is caused by the Sulphur, Oxides, Nitrates, Particulate Matter, etc.
COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease): Another chronic disease which is caused by air pollution is COPD. In this disease, the Alveoli, Air Sacs, and Air Passage become inflamed. People who work in mines, docks, or quarries are most likely affected by this disease.
Lung Cancer: Presence of various carcinogens in the air may cause serious issues like pulmonary or lung cancer. In this disease, an uncontrolled growth of cells reduces the amount of oxygen in the lungs. It also affects the functionality of the Lungs.
Cardiovascular Diseases: Breathing polluted air for a long time may lead to heart problems. Pollutants such as Nitrogen oxide, Carbon Monoxide, and Ozone mixed with bloodstream may damage the functionality of Heart and lead to cardiovascular disease.
Threat to Pregnant Women and Newborns: Air pollution adversely affects the health of pregnant women. Breathing polluted air by pregnant women weakens the immune system of unborn child.
How Can We Work Individually Towards Reducing the Pollution
Delhi is one of the most polluted cities in the world and both short-term, as well as long-term measures, are required to improve the situation. 72-Hour Pollution Forecast System is the step in the right direction. It will help residents know in advance about upcoming pollution days and also increase general awareness of this issue.
Pulmonology is the branch of science dealing with respiratory problems and related medicines. Respiratory Problems have become very common among people with increased pollution and dust particles in the air. Some of the most common lung diseases are:
It is a very common disease nowadays with many people suffering from it. In this condition, people have inflamed bronchial tubes which become sensitive, causing difficulty in breathing. The problem gets aggravated by smoking, air pollution, and chemical sprays. People suffering from it, complain of a dry cough, wheezing, and chest tightening.
The condition may also be triggered by allergies and dust particles. Doctors generally recommend taking an inhaler to asthma patients. It generally develops during childhood and progresses with age.
2. Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
It is a disease used to denote multiple respiratory problems including chronic bronchitis and emphysema. It generally affects the bronchial tubes and causes inflammation of the airways that lead to the production of sputum (excess mucus). Other symptoms include shortness of breath and coughing. The generation of mucus also leaves people more prone to having infections.
According to doctors, it is difficult to identify COPD because the symptoms are associated with old age and a general decline in health. People generally develop COPD as early as 30 to 40 years of age. Moreover, the condition is aggravated due to excessive smoking.
Treatments include quitting smoking, bronchodilator therapy and pulmonary rehabilitation. It is a very serious disease and is not reversible like asthma. It generally worsens with time.
3. Chronic Bronchitis
It is one of the types of COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) and is generally associated with the formation of excess mucus in the lungs. This results in severe coughing. It is treated the same way as COPD. However, people also may develop acute bronchitis which is an infection caused by too much mucus in airways and subsides with medications.
It is a serious respiratory illness that is one of the types of COPD and is caused by smoking. Smoking damages the lungs to the point where the patient may have difficulty in exhaling air. They may need the help of an oxygen mask to help them in breathing.
5. Lung Cancer
One of the worst respiratory problems to have and is caused by irregular cell growth that results in tumors that interferes with the functioning of the lungs. The problem is aggravated by excessive smoking and air pollution. Symptoms include coughing up of blood, change in voices, vigorous breathing.
6. Influenza and Pneumonia
These are very common lung problems occurring among people. Influenza is a viral infection that causes damages to the lungs. Pneumonia is an infection in the lungs caused by a bacteria or virus. In cases of pneumonia, there is an accumulation of mucus or fluid in the lungs that prevent air from reaching the blood. Symptoms may include coughing, fever, shaking and difficulty in breathing. Both these diseases are curable with help of medicines but people who smoke excessively may suffer more than others.
These were some of the most common respiratory problems that can be seen among people. The first step towards treatment and prevention is to go to a doctor and consult him with the symptoms you are experiencing.
When it comes to COPD or Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, not many people are aware of this condition. COPD is a chronic medical condition characterized by the inflammation of lungs. The inflammation interferes with the functioning of the lungs resulting in breathing problems. An early diagnosis and timely medication can improve the condition to a great extent. However, lack of proper knowledge and myths surrounding COPD often make the situation worse. In this article, we will discuss some myths and facts related to COPD to help people understand the condition better.
Myth: COPD is an incurable chronic lung disease mainly affecting the aged people (above 60 years).
Fact: There is no denying the fact that COPD is indeed a chronic disorder that severely affects the lungs and its functioning. However, with timely diagnosis and treatment, the condition and the deleterious consequences can be managed and controlled significantly. Since COPD triggers breathing problems (the airflow from the lungs gets obstructed), the use of bronchodilators, oxygen therapy or corticosteroids can be highly beneficial. Though COPD is rare among young adults, the condition can affect people in their late 30's or early 40's as well.
Myth: COPD only affects people who smoke.
Fact: Smoking is one of the triggers for COPD, but the condition can also affect people who have never smoked in their lifetime. Factors such as neonatal chronic lung disease or prolonged exposure to substances that cause lung irritation and damage (toxic industrial fumes and chemicals) can play a pivotal role in triggering COPD. COPD can also be a genetic predisposition.
Myth: People with COPD should avoid exercise and physical activities.
Fact: Mild to moderate exercise (especially breathing exercise) are indeed helpful and go a long way in the effective management of COPD. Exercising regularly (for 20-30 minutes or as the doctor recommended) help to lower the blood pressure and improve the circulation that provides fruitful results for people with breathing problems. However, doctors do advise people with shortness of breath to avoid strenuous exercise.
Myth: COPD only affects the lungs.
Fact: With time and left unmanaged and untreated, COPD acts as a catalyst making a person more susceptible to heart ailments. In some cases, the condition can also trigger depression and anxiety.
Myth: In the case of COPD, giving up on smoking will not produce any positive results.
Fact: Giving up on smoking may not help to reverse the damage that has already been caused by COPD. However, quitting smoking along with proper medications and lifestyle changes does help to control the condition better. In some instances, there were also significant improvements in the associated symptoms (such as shortness of breath, fatigue, wheezing, a chronic cough).
Myth: COPD is another name for Asthma.
Fact: Many people confuse COPD with Asthma. Though some symptoms may appear identical (such as wheezing, shortness of breath), the conditions are different and so are their treatments.
Every copd, asthma and patient with age more than 65 year should vaccinated with influenza vaccine every year and pneumoccocal vaccination every 5th year.
COPD stands for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease and is generally used to describe a broad category of diseases. These include chronic bronchitis, emphysema, non-reversible asthma as well as some forms of bronchiectasis. All of these diseases, however, can be prevented from getting worse by taking similar measures as the causes of these diseases are very similar.
Here are the ways to prevent COPD exacerbations:
Seeing someone who used to do all their activities on their own turn to someone who needs help even with small things like going to the bathroom can be very difficult.
The lungs are vital organs in that they are essential to supply oxygen to the entire body. If the various organs do not receive adequate oxygen, their function can be impaired. Therefore, lung function needs to be maintained. Lung function can be impaired by chronic conditions like COPD and bronchiectasis. In both these, the overall ability of the lungs to take in adequate oxygen is reduced. Therefore, the lungs need to be rehabilitated so that they can improve their ability to function better. These exercises are aimed at the following:
It has been proven beyond doubt that in addition to medications, physiotherapy plays a vital role in improving lung function over a period of time. Depending on the actual condition of the patient, a physiotherapy program is drawn up. Initially, the therapist will guide the patient and/or the caretaker with the various exercises. Over a period of time, the caretaker and the patient can do these on their own. The intent of these common exercises is to improve breathing efficiency, clear mucus, and improve overall lung function.
It has been proven beyond doubt that with no side effects (unlike medications), physiotherapy improves the overall quality of life in people with COPD.
COPD, which is short for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, is a severe form of lung disease that is characterized by increased breathlessness and obstruction of airflow from the lungs. People who are suffering from COPD are at an increased risk of developing lung cancer, heart diseases and many other conditions. It includes progressive lung diseases such as chronic bronchitis, emphysema, few forms of bronchiectasis and refractory (non-reversible) asthma. The former two are the most common conditions contributing to COPD.
Chronic bronchitis induces inflammation in the airway that carries air to the lungs and fills it with mucus. This either completely blocks the airway or narrows it, causing difficulty in breathing. However in emphysema, the air sacs inside the lungs which inflate and deflate as you breathe in and out, lose their elasticity due to which less air comes in and goes out leaving you breathless.
The best way to treat COPD is to quit smoking. Your doctor may also prescribe you medications or ask you to enroll in a lung rehab program.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (copd) is a chronic inflammatory lung disease that causes obstructed airflow from the lungs. It's caused by long-term exposure to irritating gases or particulate matter, most often from cigarette smoke.
Emphysema and chronic bronchitis are the two most common conditions that contribute to copd.
*chronic bronchitis* is inflammation of the lining of the bronchial tubes, which carry air to and from the air sacs (alveoli) of the lungs. It's characterized by daily cough and mucus (sputum) production.
*emphysema* is a condition in which the alveoli at the end of the smallest air passages (bronchioles) of the lungs are destroyed as a result of damaging exposure to cigarette smoke and other irritating gases and particulate matter.
-the most significant risk factor for copd is long-term cigarette smoking.
-occupational exposure to dusts and chemicals. Long-term exposure to chemical fumes, vapors and dusts in the workplace can irritate and inflame the lungs.
-the uncommon genetic disorder alpha-1-antitrypsin deficiency is the cause of some cases of copd.
*Sign & symptoms*
-shortness of breath, wheezing chest, with tightness.
-chronic cough may be clear, white, yellow or greenish.
-blueness of the lips or fingernail beds (cyanosis).
-frequent respiratory infections.
-lack of energy
-unintended weight loss.
-swelling in ankles, feet or legs
-pulmonary function tests measure the amount of air you can inhale and exhale, and if your lungs are delivering enough oxygen to your blood.
-spirometry is the most common lung function test. It can detect copd even before onset of symptoms.
-chest x-ray. A chest x-ray can show emphysema, an x-ray can also rule out other lung problems or heart failure.
-ct scans can also be used to screen for lung cancer.
-arterial blood gas analysis.
-alpha-1-antitrypsin (aat) deficiency.
-recurrent respiratory infections. Any respiratory infection can make it much more difficult to breathe and could cause further damage to lung tissue.