What is COPD?
COPD is a lung disease that makes breathing heavier. It is the third top cause of death in the United States, taking the lives of 11 million people. Individuals with COPD are highly prone to getting other diseases like lung cancer and heart disease. The preliminary cause of COPD is long exposure to harmful cigarette smoke. Usual symptoms include problems while breathing, cough, wheezing, etc. COPD has two common conditions, Emphysema and chronic bronchitis
In Chronic bronchitis disorder, the inflamed bronchial tube generates a lot of mucus which results in coughing and breathing difficulty. Cigarette smoking and air pollution are the main causes of Chronic bronchitis. Emphysema happens when the sac in the lungs gets destroyed due to excessive cigarette smoking. COPD is not a rare disease and there are lots of treatments available. With proper care and management, people with COPD can again live a quality life with decreased risk of other conditions.
What are the Prominent Causes of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
In developed nations extensive smoking is the main cause of COPD. About 20-30 percent of extensive smokers develop this disorder. Whereas in the developing countries there are other reasons which lead to COPD like fume exposure from burning fuel that is used for cooking and heating at homes. There have also been cases where a rare genetic disorder called alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency has become one of the causes. Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency is caused due to a lack of protein which eventually damages the lungs.
When To Consult a Doctor
The symptoms of COPD don’t appear easily until it has damaged the lungs severely. The damage can become worse over time if not treated immediately or if the cigarette smoking continues. The initial symptoms include regular cough and mucus. Other symptoms that develop over time are:
- Difficulty in breathing, especially during sports hours
- Chest tightness
- Need throat-clearing early in the morning because of heavy mucus in the lungs
- A severe cough that generates green, white, or yellow mucus
- Lips and fingernail beds turning blue
- Regular respiratory infection
- Abnormal weight loss
- Lack of energy
- Swollen ankles, feet, and legs
Treatment becomes difficult after every stage, that’s why it is important to check on the initial symptoms and pursue an early treatment to get a fast recovery.
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Treatment
For years stem cell therapies have been used to treat COPD. It has always derived great results due to the anti-inflammatory and anti-fibrotic nature. The cells are infused into the lungs systemically. Very quickly these injected cells hit the patient’s lungs and the poor breathing starts to improve. In the next 6-12 weeks, the patient can feel the improvement as this therapy begins to repair the lung tissues. And within six months, the patient can potentially get back to their normal life. Through stem cell therapy, the function of the lungs is improved due to improved symptoms, reduced exacerbation therapy, and increased life expectancy.