Long delay of lung disease, so can the English name Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease translate roughly. The disease, COPD, in brief, has been developing gradually over the years. One of the main symptoms is chronic coughing. Especially dangerous is that up to 85 percent of people who are infected from the early stages do not notice or do not know your illness. In some patients, coughing and respiratory distress are not associated with COPD, so they are not treated properly. In addition, early symptoms such as persistent coughing and poor performance are often not taken seriously or are not pushed into other illnesses.
The COP. is often manifested, progressing and not therapeutic. The disease can be slowed down if it is detected early and treated properly. Depending on the severity and degree of illness, sufferers can live an almost normal life with the right medicine. They have been affected by up to 15 percent of those over 40 years of age. With age, the risk of developing COPD increases.
This happens in the lungs
In the disease, the bronchi are chronic inflammation. Their walls additionally thicken mucus forms. This allows significantly less air to be introduced into the cells, causing respiratory distress. Many sufferers also suffer from a so-called pulmonary emphysema. At the same time, the cells of the cells are destroyed. As a result, less and less oxygen enters the blood, the lungs develop, exhalation is difficult.
Cough, sputum and respiratory difficulty are the first typical signs. Many have even affected with a bad cold or flu. However, if the condition remains for more than eight weeks without really cold, you should definitely go to the family doctor. Often persistent cough occurs especially in the morning. If there is still a whistling sound when you exhale or if you have dyspnoea with low loads, you should hurry.
Smoking is the biggest risk factor. Only 20% of the patients do not smoke. It damages the self-cleaning function of the lungs. Even passive smoking and especially in children and adolescents can later cause COPD disease. The disease can also break out in hereditary. Unmanaged asthma, delayed and unsafe respiratory infections can also be detrimental, as does environmental pollution from dust or gasses.
With a lung function test, a so-called spirometry, the doctor will see if you have COPD. At the same time, determine to what extent your lungs have already been destroyed.
The levels of seriousness
The disease is divided into four levels of severity, which are calculated according to the outcome of the age, sex and lung test.
COPD is progressing slowly. Again and again there are relapses, the so-called exacerbations, which greatly accelerate the course. Often they are caused by respiratory diseases. Patients should therefore be protected as far as possible from the further burden of the lungs.
Although COPD is not therapeutic, many sufferers do not die directly from the disease but from the conditions attached. Because of limited capacity, many are trying to protect themselves. Only light things increase, they do not climb on stairs or over long distances. In the end, they almost only stay in their own, supposedly safe apartment. They are socially isolated, some get depressed.
The treatment options
The most important direct measure is absolute cessation of smoking. Affected people should reduce as much as possible any harmful effects on the lungs. Medicines, such as sprays, keep the airways clean. Cortisone can be administered for inflammatory processes. However, this anti-inflammatory is rarely considered a permanent solution. It is more likely to be used in acute attacks. Drugs allow for a largely normal life, always depends on the proper treatment and dosage of a specific lung.
Those who are affected can still do this
In addition, they also help with specific breathing exercises, regular, appropriate sports and exercise in the fresh air. All of this works and can help in keeping the bronchi. Special groups of intellectual sports and even pulmonary choruses are good starting points. People affected are also more involved in social contacts. In addition, sufferers must be vaccinated against influenza and pneumococci. This prevents further pressure in the lungs. A holistic treatment also requires a conscious diet so that physical activity is not reduced unnecessarily. Physiotherapy and other rehabilitation measures that help to strengthen the lungs and the body help if necessary.
It is also necessary to regularly check and consult with the lung specialist. Only he can develop a treatment based on your personal characteristics and disease data.
The sooner a COPD is detected and treated, the slower the progression is. However, this depends on many personal factors of the patients. Generally, patients undergoing good treatment can live an amazing life for a long time. Nevertheless, life expectancy is reduced by a few years, and in the latter severity, patients may be dependent on continuous oxygenation. Depression, muscle loss and loss of bone mass can accompany the disease in addition.