COPD ... These four letters mean nothing to you? Yet chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is the third cause of death by 2020. Tobacco use is the main cause.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is a disease that progressively leads to narrowing of the bronchial tubes. Consequence: When the bronchi become narrower, it is slowing the effort. Over the years, this slowdown comes to the same efforts the smallest.
In over 80% of cases, the cause of COPD is cigarette smoking whether tobacco or cannabis. The remaining 20% relate to occupational COPD related to exposure to certain toxic substances.
COPD: a silent disease
COPD is a real silent killer. Two out of three attacks would not know. The evolution of COPD is slow and gradual: the first signs of the disease usually develops after 20 years of smoking, because of a pack of cigarettes per day: 20-30% of smokers consuming more than 20 cigarettes day sooner or later suffer from COPD.
If you smoke, you cough and spit every morning more than three months per year for two years, you probably have chronic bronchitis.
These symptoms are not to trivialize, because they constitute a first step towards COPD. In fact, in two or three out of ten smokers, bronchitis evolve into COPD, which is actually a chronic bronchitis accompanied by bronchial obstruction.
Do not rely on just being blown or not. Breathlessness appears only late when the disease is very advanced. Therefore, when you cough and spit in the morning, a single premium reflex: to measure your breath to change your breathing capacity. For that, nothing simpler. Appointment with your doctor or with a pulmonologist: through a minispiromètre, it will test your breath and your expiratory flow.
To chronic respiratory failure
In the long term, if no action is taken, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease leads to chronic respiratory failure very debilitating. Severe shortness of breath can create a permanent disability. At this stage, more than 50% of the patients were subjected to setting under oxygen over 15 hours per day. Acute episodes of worsening may even require hospitalization in intensive care.
One of the most effective measures to stop the progression of COPD, or even to regress, is to stop smoking completely. This is the first treatment to develop.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease affects 2.5 to 4 million people. In 2020, it will be the third cause of mortality.
COPD: what to do when symptoms are very important?
No medicine can cure COPD is irreversible. Treatments aim to improve breathing.
This is among other bronchodilators, which help dilate the bronchi and feel an improvement within a few minutes to breathe and to avoid shortness of breath.
One can also make use of inhaled corticosteroids to reduce inflammation of the bronchi and mucolytics to remove bronchial secretions.
Physical therapy can also be very useful to unclutter the bronchi.
At the stage of respiratory failure, the only treatment is oxygen therapy.