Reviewed by Barry J. Make, , Irina Petrache,

Understanding COPDEmphysema is a disease, often call Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). A person with COPD may have either emphysema or chronic bronchitis, but many have both. Some people with COPD may also have asthma.

Let’s take a look inside the lungs to see what is happening. The air sacs, also called alveoli, and the airways have been damaged in COPD, most often by cigarette smoking or certain agents in the environment. In the healthy lung, the air sacs or alveoli look like a bunch of grapes. Look at the alveoli of emphysema. In emphysema, the walls of the alveoli are partially destroyed. This results in a smaller total number of alveoli in the lungs. Fewer air sacs mean that the lungs are not able to transfer oxygen into the bloodstream as well. Also the airways may collapse a little.


Programs & Services

Clinical Trials

Age Dependent Effects of Cigarette Smoke in Humans

Mouse testing has shown  that smoke exposure affects certain cells differently in the lung depending on age. This study is designed to test this effect in humans.

If you meet the initial phone screening qualifications, your study participation will consist of 2 or 3 visits to National Jewish Health''s main campus. This study requires each participant to undergo a bronchoscopy procedure at the last visit. 

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