May 4, 2015
Professor Lori Olson
COPD: Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD, is a long-term disease that causes breathing problems. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is the third leading cause of death worldwide. COPD, however, is a heterogeneous collection of diseases with differing causes, pathogenic mechanisms, and physiological effects. Therefore a comprehensive approach to COPD prevention will need to address the complexity of COPD. Advances in the understanding of the natural history of COPD and the development of strategies to assess COPD in its early stages make prevention a reasonable, if ambitious, goal. Prevention can be classified as primary, secondary, or tertiary (Rennard, Drummond, 2015).
The term COPD is used to describe certain diseases that partially block airflow in the lungs. The most common kinds of COPD include: Emphysema and Chronic bronchitis and other diseases. Emphysema can cause damage to the alveoli that cannot be cured; this is the tiny air sacs of the lungs where oxygen is put into your blood. With emphysema your lungs become less able to take in good air and get rid of carbon dioxide.
Chronic bronchitis occurs when the airways in the lungs become swollen; this causes more mucus than normal to be made in the lungs. The swelling and increased mucus can cause the airflow to become partially blocked. Chronic bronchitis and emphysema often occur together. Other diseases that may cause long-term airflow problems in the lugs include asthmatic bronchitis, which is also called chronic asthma, and cystic fibrosis.
Smoking or being around smokers causes the most cases of COPD. The more you smoke, the more you cause irreversible damage to your lungs. Children of heavy smokers can also have an increased risk of having COPD later in life. People who do not smoke but who live with others that smoke
References: Rennard, S., & Drummond, M. (2015). The Lancet. Early Obstructive Pulmonary Disease: Definition, Assessment, and Prevention, 385(9979), 1778-1788. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736 (15)60647-X About the COPD Foundation. (). Retrieved from http://www/copdfoundation.prg/ What is COPD. (). Retrieeved from http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/copd