Lungs affected by COPD are very sensitive, particularly to things like respiratory irritants, physical strain, and less-than-ideal breathing conditions (such as hot or humid air). Because of this, if you have COPD, you've probably noticed that your COPD symptoms tend to flare up in certain environments or when you do certain things.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is one of the most prevalent lung conditions, affecting more than 328 million people around the world and an estimated 16 million people in the United States alone.
Have you ever left a conversation with your doctor confused about their instructions or explanations? It may have been the complicated terminology they were using, or long instructions about a prescription you need to be taking, or a lack of explanations for your treatment. Studies show that there is a gap between patient–doctor communication leading to decreased quality of care.
Education is a vital element of the patient care process and can contribute to successful and effective management of COPD.
Educating yourself about COPD is your job as the patient. This comes down to understanding your COPD symptoms, the testing, and management and treatment options involved. Then, you will be able to effectively ask your doctor questions and confidently understand their answers.
There are many different conditions that can cause lung problems and emphysema, including a variety of heritable diseases. One of these is Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency (also known as AAT deficiency or Alpha-1), a rare, incurable genetic disorder that most people have never heard of.
Alpha-1 is the result of a protein deficiency that can cause mild or severe damage to the lungs and liver. Many people with AAT deficiency experience asthma-like symptoms including breathlessness, wheezing, and coughing that can occur in childhood or later in life.