Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD is a lung disease affecting millions of people. Those who have COPD often suffer from chronic bronchitis and emphysema and some may experience asthma-like symptoms. Take a look inside the lungs and learn how COPD affects your body and life.
What is COPD? Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, or COPD for short, is a lung disease that affects millions of people. COPD includes diseases such as Emphysema and Chronic Bronchitis.
A person with COPD may have either Emphysema or Chronic Bronchitis but most have both. Some people with COPD may also have Asthma like symptoms such as wheezing.
Let's take a look inside the lungs to see what is happening. First look at the normal lung, the air sacks or alveoli look like a bunch of grapes.
Now look at the air sacks of Emphysema. In Emphysema there is damage to the walls of the air sacks or alveoli in the lungs. This results in a smaller number of normal air sacks, making it more difficult to transfer oxygen into the bloodstream. Also the lungs may not be able to get rid of Carbon Dioxide as well. Damaged lungs also lose their stretchiness or elasticity.
Look back at the normal airway. The airway is clear. Now look at the airway of Chronic Bronchitis. In Chronic Bronchitis there is a long lasting cough and mucus production. The airways of the lungs become swollen and produce more mucus.
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