chronic bronchitis emphysema - Chronic Bronchitis and Emphysema
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Chronic Bronchitis and Emphysema

What are these Conditions? Chronic bronchitis and emphysema are characterized by chronically blocked breathing passages. Collectively, asthma, emphysema, and chronic bronchitis or any combination are called chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Usually, more than one of these underlying conditions coexist; most often, bronchitis and emphysema occur together.


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In other cases it is seen that a patient develops intrinsic asthma after suffering with chronic bronchitis at some very early stages in life. Intrinsic asthma may develop much later and also without any apparent history of allergens or any genetic indications. So many times because of the close relativity of all these diseases it becomes very difficult to chart out the primary cause leading to other complications. Closeness in symptoms also presents a very tricky situation.

Acupressure Manipulating various lung, conception vessel, and bronchial points can help quiet coughs and ease breathing. Chinese Herbal Therapy Chinese herbs can be very effective in treating many symptoms of emphysema. Herbal formulas used to treat chronic bronchitis (as emphysema is sometimes called) are Pulmonary Tonic Pills, Ping Chuan, Bronchitis Pills (compound), Special Medicine for Bronchitis (also called Hsiao Keh Chuan, available in pill or liquid form), Shedanchuanbeye Extract, and Fritillaria Extract Pills. Cordyceps is often used alone or with a formula to tonify the lungs.

There is a direct causal relationship between COPD and smoking, clearly indicated in COPD progression. In many cases, after 10 years of smoking, a person develops a chronic cough with the production of a small amount of sputum. At the age of 40, there is only shortness of breath during exertion. But by the age of 50, the shortness of breath becomes more common. This is followed by a morning cough related to smoking. These symptoms may not seem serious at first, but they gradually progress to the point where activities of daily living, such as walking, dressing and even eating, cause extreme shortness of breath.

The most predominant smoking related illness is heart disease. The harmful substances inhaled by smokers harden the arteries which speed up the blood clotting. Once the arteries are clogged cardiovascular diseases called thrombosis which can either be coronary or cerebral. Coronary thrombosis leads to heart attack due to the clogging of the veins supplying blood to the heart. Cerebral thrombosis is caused by the clogging of the veins connected to the brain which can cause collapse, stroke or paralysis.

" To prevent a recurrence of pneumonia, don't use antimicrobial drugs during minor viral infections, because this may lead to antibiotic-resistant bacteria in the upper airway. If you then develop pneumonia, you may need to take more toxic drugs to get rid of the orgamsms.

Cardiac Asthma: In this situation the symptoms of breathlessness are similar to those of bronchial asthma but they are caused mainly because of a heart disease. These symptoms happen generally during sleep or after exertion. The attacks are very similar to those of asthma accompanied by suffocation and tightening of chest muscles. They may even create pain in the chest region. The patient gasps for breath and is very restless. He may sweat profusely and has terrible difficulty in inhalation and exhalation. This may also be accompanied by a sharp rise in blood pressure and may trigger off terrifying fear of death in patients. The attacks may last for about few minutes to few hours. After the attack the patients feel terribly exhausted even for several days.

Asthmatic bronchitis is a common respiratory condition among chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases. Bronchitis generally causes inflammation and irritation of the respiratory tract. The mucous membrane, bronchial tubes and other organs and tissues involved in the process of breathing become inflamed due to exposure to irritants (dust, pollen, chemicals) or infection with viruses. The respiratory tract has many natural defenses against irritants, but under some circumstances, external agents can break through these barriers.

??? If you're taking antibiotics to treat a respiratory infection, be sure to complete the entire prescribed course of therapy. ??? Practice good oral hygiene to help prevent infection, and learn how to recognize early symptoms of infection. Avoid people with respiratory infections. Get Pneumovax (pneumococcal vaccine) and annual flu shots.

All in all, there were over 114,000 premature deaths in 2002 from cigarette smoking, mostly from cancer, but also from heart disease and pulmonary (lung) disease. The best way to improve ones chances of not suffering from a shortened life and succumbing to one of the diseases mentioned in this article is by quitting smoking once and for all. Benefits have been clearly documented and the sooner smokers quit, the bigger the benefits of quitting become on their life expectancy. Indeed, smokers who quit before they reach thirty, statistically negate virtually all the ill health effect of smoking and can generally expect to live as long as a non-smoking contemporary.

Oesophageal cancer deaths numbered just under 5,000 and the deceased were found to be 66% smokers, 71% and 65% men to women respectively; again another clear link that smoking and oesophageal cancer are linked.

Smoking is the primary cause of COPD. Passive smoking can also lead to COPD. The effects of smoking on the lungs can be severe and permanent. Smoking causes irreversible damage to the lung tissues and causes inflammation of the lungs. This inflammation stops only when the smoking is stopped. The cigarette manufacturing companies add some chemicals to cigarettes for various reasons that block the production of alpha-1-antitrypsin (AAT), which maintain the elastic fibers of the alveoli. This in turn destroys the walls of the lungs, which makes the process of breathing very difficult.

Kidney cancer is another cancer where smokers are seen less frequently than non-smokers in the statistics. The next disease we shall look at is the non-cancerous, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD. The disease manifests itself mainly in two forms, being emphysema and chronic bronchitis.

The bronchial tubes produce mucus, a protective substance that covers the respiratory organs. Also, the mucous membrane, bronchial tubes and other soft tissues are covered with cilia, hair-like prominences that prevent irritants and viruses from reaching inside the lungs. However, prolonged exposure to external agents enables airborne particles and viruses to penetrate these defenses, causing inflammation and infection. The bronchial tubes start to produce an excess of mucus, obstructing the airways and perturbing the process of breathing.

Michael Russell Your Independent guide to Medicine

Pancreatic cancer is another cancer that is less prevalent in smokers than the general population. Indeed 20% of men and 26% of women dying from the disease in 2002 were smokers, suggesting parity with women and a disparity with men. It may be reasonable therefore to assume that there are other contributory factors in male pancreatic cancers.

Emphysema is the destruction of the lung leading to loss of surface area, alveoli (air sacks in the lungs) and the loss of elasticity. Chronic bronchitis manifests itself through swollen bronchii and over production of mucus within the lung. It is characterised by daily coughing, bringing up sputum. Both emphysema and bronchitis lead to slow, debilitating and frustrating deaths for their victims.

Finally, heart disease is the biggest single killer in the UK with over a quarter of a million deaths a year as a result of its various forms. Of all the major forms of heart disease, ischaemic heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, aortic aneurysm, myocardial degeneration and atherosclerosis, the percentage of smokers suffering from aortic aneuryism was just under 60%. All other forms of heart disease showed near 26% or below. This suggests that smoking may not be the main contributory factor but it almost certainly will have had an impact.

Next, bladder cancer takes over 1,800 lives per year of which 37% are found to be smokers. However, only 19% of female cases were smokers compared with 47% of male cases. It is fair to assume that there are other factors more prevalent in female bladder cancer other than smoking but the link is clear in men.

How is it treated? Pneumonia is treated with antimicrobial drugs, which vary with the cause of the disease. Humidified oxygen therapy is given if the person has too little oxygen in the blood, and mechanical ventilation is used to treat respiratory failure. Other supportive measures include a high-calorie diet, adequate fluid intake, bed rest, and pain relievers to relieve chest pain. These supportive measures can increase the person's comfort, avoid complications, and speed recovery. To help remove secretions, the person may be taught to cough and perform deep-breathing exercises.

Stomach cancer took 1,650 lives in 2002 but is found in 35% of men compared with only 11% of female smokers. It is reasonable therefore to draw the same conclusion about the causes as for bladder cancer between men and women.

About the Author:

Juliet Cohen writes articles for Diseases. She also writes articles for Makeup and Hairstyles.

COPD provides detailed information on chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, COPD and life expectancy, COPD medication, COPD stages and more. COPD is affiliated with Causes Of Cystic Fibrosis.

Nutrition and Supplementation Before breakfast, drink a mixture of one teaspoonful of pure, cold-pressed olive oil and apple juice to provide essential fatty acids and help eliminate toxic waste.

Clinical physical examinations are unable to establish an appropriate diagnose judging only by the symptoms of asthmatic bronchitis. Chronic bronchitis, emphysema and asthmatic bronchitis all generate the same symptoms (cough, difficulty breathing, wheezing, chest discomfort when breathing) and therefore it is very difficult to correctly distinguish between them. In many cases, respiratory illnesses are diagnosed upon patients' reports of their symptoms, which aren't very revealing in indicating the exact cause of illness. Asthmatic bronchitis can be effectively diagnosed through the means of laboratory tests and careful physical examinations.

How are they Treated? Treatment aims to relieve symptoms and prevent complications. Because most people with chronic bronchitis or emphysema receive outpatient treatment, they get comprehensive teaching to help them comply with therapy and understand the nature of these progressive diseases. If programs in pulmonary rehabilitation are available, they should consider enrolling.

 
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Hydrotherapy Steam inhalations are very effective for loosening and expelling mucus. Add a few drops of a favorite essential oil, if you wish. Under professional supervision, you also might try constitutional therapy or hot compress applications. For directions on these therapies, see "Hydrotherapy" in the "Introduction to Complementary Therapies" section.

Oral corticosteroids should be used carefully, to avoid excessive weight loss. Oral corticosteroid reduces the duration and impact of exacerbations. They improve the airflow and lung function, but there are increased side effects such as diabetes and osteoporosis. Low dose oral corticosteroid is often used in the treatment of acute exacerbations of COPD. Oral corticosteroids may be used when symptoms rapidly worsen (COPD exacerbation), especially when there is an increased mucus production.

" Type: Primary pneumonia occurs when a person inhales or aspirates a disease-producing microorganism; it includes pneumococcal and viral pneumonia. Secondary pneumonia may occur in someone who's suffered lung damage from a noxious chemical or other insult, or it may be caused by the blood-borne spread of bacteria from a distant site.

What is this condition? Pneumonia is an acute lung inflammation in which the lungs fill with a fibrous material, impairing gas exchange. With poor gas exchange, the blood has too much carbon dioxide and too little oxygen.

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??? To strengthen your breathing muscles, take slow, deep breaths and exhale through pursed lips. ??? If you're receiving home oxygen therapy, make sure you or a family member knows how to use the equipment correctly. Don't increase the oxygen flow or concentration above what the doctor prescribes because too much oxygen may eliminate your respiratory drive and cause confusion and drowsiness. You probably won't need more than 2 to 3 liters per minute .

COPD Stages provides detailed information on chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, COPD and life expectancy, COPD medication, COPD stages and more. COPD Stages is affiliated with Causes Of Cystic Fibrosis.

What tests are needed to diagnose COPD? A test called spirometry is often performed to diagnose COPD. Bronchodilators (drugs that cause the airway to dilate) are usually added to confirm the diagnosis. If the test result does not show improvement with bronchodilators, then COPD is very likely.

Other causes that lead to COPD are industrial pollution, occupational dusts, continuous contact with hazardous chemicals, outdoors air pollution, etc. In some cases, parents pass on the genes to their children. In some rare cases, COPD is found in people suffering from a gene-related disorder called alpha 1 antitrypsin deficiency. Alpha 1 antitrypsin is a protein that inactivates the destructive proteins in the blood. The absence or the low level of alpha 1 antitrypsin in these people leads to the destruction of lungs and ultimately to COPD.

Firstly, we will deal with the cancer deaths so lets get underway with the 33,600 deaths from lung cancer. 84% of these deaths were in smokers. This means that the average 26% of the smoking population yielded more than three times the proportion of deaths ' a clear link.

What causes it? Pneumonia can be caused by a virus, bacterium, fungus, protozoa, mycobacterium, mycoplasma, or rickettsia. Certain factors can predispose a person to bacterial and viral pneumonia-chronic illness and debilitation, cancer (especially lung cancer), abdominal or chest surgery, atelectasis (the collapse of air sacs in the lung), the flu, common colds or other viral respiratory infections, chronic respiratory disease (such a, emphysema, chronic bronchitis, asthma, bronchiectasis, or cystic fibrosis), smoking, malnutrition, alcoholism, sickle cell disease, tracheostomy, exposure to harmful gases, aspiration, and drugs that suppress the immune system.

In contrast to bronchial asthma, cardiac asthma is caused by failure of the pumping action of the left ventricle of the human heart. It is generally a condition that is suspected in people with a history of hyper tension and heart diseases in the family. It is also to be generally ruled out before proceeding for further treatments if the patient happens to be above the age of forty years.

Cystic fibrosis (CF) is a serious disorder which may produce chronic intestinal and pulmonary problems. The symptoms here are those of severe asthma. The disease may start with recurrent infections and pneumonia. The infants who are underweight and prematurely born generally show the symptoms of CF. the chest X-rays of such children show severe scarring of the lungs due to recurring bouts of pneumonia. CF is best detected with the help of a sweat test because the patients secrete excessive amounts of sodium and chloride salts in their sweat.

What are the symptoms of COPD? The two main symptoms are cough and breathlessness. COPD sufferers commonly complain about breathlessness and cough that develop gradually over a long period of time. The cough that COPD sufferer gets are usually productive which means they commonly cough up phlegm. The cough usually comes and goes initially but tends to become persistent as time passes. Breathlessness is usually intermittent and only occurs with exertion in the beginning, however if you continue to smoke, the breathlessness persists even when you are at rest, this can be quite distressing! Other symptoms are chronic sputum production, where you constantly cough up phlegm all day and recurrent chest infection. People with COPD are more prone to chest infection for obvious reasons, as the lining in the lung looses its normal defense mechanism against intruding bugs.

It has long been known that smoking and lung cancer are causally linked. After having discovered this association though, much has been made of the heightened incidence of other forms of cancer caused by of smoking. I am going to highlight the data that reiterates the claims and suggest that the evidence is not so strong for other forms of cancer being causally linked with smoking. The evidence is analysed from the mortality statistics for the UK in 2002.

Hysterical Emphysema: This is a disease that is mostly psycho-somatic in nature. It is generally found in young girls and also in some hyper sensitive older women. In this symptoms are that of heavy breathing but do not show any difficulty in breathing. There is no perspiration and apparently there is no wheezing too. Bu the patient still feels very heavy breathing. The attack usually manifests after an emotionally charged bout that may include uncanny anger.

Long term use of corticosteroids has many side effects such as water retention, bruising, puffy face, increased appetite, weight gain and stomach irritation. It may also impair bone metabolism. For an elderly population, the continuous use of oral corticosteroids for COPD has possible cardiac side effects. Recent studies notice that patients who show continuous use of oral corticosteroids for COPD may also suffer from acute myocardial infarction (AMI). Some proof suggests that patients with COPD who respond to corticosteroids have eosinophilic inflammation and other attributes of an asthma phenotype. Research on oral corticosteroids for COPD exacerbations reports improve lung function and reduced hospitalization. The incidence of treatment failure in the form of return to the hospital, death, or the need for a tube inserted through the mouth or nose and into the chest to deliver oxygen is also reduced.

Many people who have had an attack like this emphasize unconsciously on the symptoms. This also makes them impersonate the symptoms repeatedly. Psychological analysis may reveal conditions of mild to extreme emotional insecurity in cases suffering from hysterical asthma. The good part is that the disease is neither serious nor may lead to any other serious ailment. It is mainly a mental condition and may also trigger off from severe hypochondria. The patients may also begin to use it as a tool for emotional manipulation of other people around them. There are really no age barriers for this disease to manifest and many times chronic cases may need psychological therapy to get over the symptoms permanently.

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Other smoking related diseases are not as rampant as cancer, heart or pulmonary disease but they are nonetheless fatal and enough reason to quit smoking. These smoking related illnesses are high blood pressure, fertility problems, asthma, and eye damages such as cataracts and lost of eyesight, dental problems, ulcers, and over all physical appearance.

COPD sounds like asthma, are they any different? Yes. Both COPD and asthma cause similar symptoms, however, they are different in certain ways. COPD causes permanent damage to the airways. The obstruction is 'fixed', hence it is irreversible in general terms. However, airway narrowing in asthma is intermittent and reverses quite easily with medication. Having said that, both COPD and asthma is common, people who suffer COPD can have an asthmatic component and vice versa.



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