Lung Diseases Caused by Smoking

Topics: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, Heart, Blood vessel Pages: 2 (413 words) Published: October 30, 2011
Lung Diseases Caused By Smoking

The term Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) covers those long term lung conditions which are characterised by shortness of breath, such as chronic bronchitis and emphysema. Whilst each condition can occur on its own, many people have a mixture of the two problems. COPD usually occurs in people who have smoked or continue to smoke cigarettes. Exposure to irritants like dust and fumes can also increase the risk of developing COPD, but are not usually the primary cause. A very small proportion of emphysema cases are caused by an inherited problem called alpha-1-antitrypsin deficiency. Research shows that there are many people living with COPD who are not aware they have the condition. Estimates indicate that up to 1 in 5 people over 40 are affected by COPD. Of those, about three out of four might not be aware they have COPD and are therefore not taking the important steps to stem the progress of their condition. They could mistakenly be receiving treatment for asthma (symptoms for COPD and asthma are similar) or they could just think their symptoms, such as breathlessness, are a natural sign of ageing. COPD generally affects people over 40 with a history of smoking.  The main symptoms of COPD include: • Shortness of breath on minimal exertion

• A repetitive cough with phlegm / mucus most days (sometimes called a smoker's cough) • Not being able to take a deep breath

Cardiovascular diseases are the diseases of heart, blood vessels of the heart and blood vessels including arteries and veins. It is a major cause of death due to smoking. Nicotine present in tobacco increases the cholesterol levels in the blood. Cholesterol and other fats get deposited in the arteries, which causes hardening of arteries. The arteries become narrow, rigid or blocked. Due to atherosclerosis (narrowing of arteries), blood clots are formed, which increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Common cardiovascular diseases found in...
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