Jump to content
Invision Community
FORUMS BLOG/NEWS USER BLOGS USER MEDIA ADVERTS   ADD  MANAGE CHAT CLUBS & USER PERSONAL FORUMS LINK EXCHANGE
HEALTH & DISEASES Diabetes Treatment Cancer Treatment Alzheimer's Treatment Crohn's Disease Treatment Cirrhosis Treatment Multiple Sclerosis Treatment Scleroderma Treatment Hair Loss Treatment Infertility Treatment
Sign in to follow this  
davidtrump

Risk factors, Complications & Prevention

Recommended Posts

Risk factors

Risk factors for COPD include:

  • Exposure to tobacco smoke. The most significant risk factor for COPD is long-term cigarette smoking. The more years you smoke and the more packs you smoke, the greater your risk. Pipe smokers, cigar smokers and marijuana smokers also may be at risk, as well as people exposed to large amounts of secondhand smoke.
  • People with asthma who smoke. The combination of asthma, a chronic inflammatory airway disease, and smoking increases the risk of COPD even more.
  • Occupational exposure to dusts and chemicals. Long-term exposure to chemical fumes, vapors and dusts in the workplace can irritate and inflame your lungs.
  • Exposure to fumes from burning fuel. In the developing world, people exposed to fumes from burning fuel for cooking and heating in poorly ventilated homes are at higher risk of developing COPD.
  • Age. COPD develops slowly over years, so most people are at least 40 years old when symptoms begin.
  • Genetics. The uncommon genetic disorder alpha-1-antitrypsin deficiency is the cause of some cases of COPD. Other genetic factors likely make certain smokers more susceptible to the disease.

Complications

COPD can cause many complications, including:

  • Respiratory infections. People with COPD are more likely to catch colds, the flu and pneumonia. Any respiratory infection can make it much more difficult to breathe and could cause further damage to lung tissue. An annual flu vaccination and regular vaccination against pneumococcal pneumonia can prevent some infections.
  • Heart problems. For reasons that aren't fully understood, COPD can increase your risk of heart disease, including heart attack. Quitting smoking may reduce this risk.
  • Lung cancer. People with COPD have a higher risk of developing lung cancer. Quitting smoking may reduce this risk.
  • High blood pressure in lung arteries. COPD may cause high blood pressure in the arteries that bring blood to your lungs (pulmonary hypertension).
  • Depression. Difficulty breathing can keep you from doing activities that you enjoy. And dealing with serious illness can contribute to development of depression. Talk to your doctor if you feel sad or helpless or think that you may be experiencing depression.

Prevention

Unlike some diseases, COPD has a clear cause and a clear path of prevention. The majority of cases are directly related to cigarette smoking, and the best way to prevent COPD is to never smoke — or to stop smoking now.

If you're a longtime smoker, these simple statements may not seem so simple, especially if you've tried quitting — once, twice or many times before. But keep trying to quit. It's critical to find a tobacco cessation program that can help you quit for good. It's your best chance for preventing damage to your lungs.

Occupational exposure to chemical fumes and dust is another risk factor for COPD. If you work with this type of lung irritant, talk to your supervisor about the best ways to protect yourself, such as using respiratory protective equipment.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
HEALTH & LEARNING Online Medical Degree Nursing School Online Online Schools to Become a Pharmacist Bachelor Degree Online Master Degree Online Online Courses MBA Degree Online Online School Associate Degree Online

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...