Don’t Let COPD Take Your Breath Away
Posted February 21, 2018
Breathe with ease!
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD is a disease that causes an obstruction of airflow to the lungs. COPD can be a serious problem that affects your breathing. It can cause coughing that can produce large amounts of mucus, wheezing, shortness of breath, etc.
Symptoms of COPD
The main symptoms of COPD include difficulty breathing, coughing, and wheezing. However, some other symptoms include:
- Tightness in chest
- Build up of mucus
- Blueness of lips
- Lack of energy
- Unintended weight loss
- Swelling of ankles, legs, or feet
How is COPD diagnosed?
There are a number of tests that can be run to diagnose for COPD. Probably the most common is the lung function test, which measures the air you are breathing in and out to make sure you are getting enough oxygen to the blood. This is usually done by way of spirometry. During a spirometry test you are asked to blow into a tube connected to a spirometer. This machine will measure how much air your lungs can hold and how fast you can blow it out. Spirometry can detect and diagnose COPD very early, even before most symptoms appear. Other ways to test for COPD are Chest x rays, CT scans, and lab tests.
What causes it?
COPD is most often caused by smoking tobacco products. It is well known that cigarettes are bad for your lungs, COPD is just one more example of the problems they can cause. People who have asthma can develop COPD later in life. Other risk factors include:
- Smokers, exposure to tobacco smoke
- Exposure to chemical fuses
- Age (most see symptoms after age 40)
What can you do to prevent COPD?
Since COPD is often related to smoking, the best way to prevent it is to never smoke or stop smoking. Trying to avoid other airborne pollution is also helpful. In addition, there are several vaccines for other illnesses that can help prevent COPD from getting worse.
There are many different methods for treating COPD:
- Quit Smoking
- Lung Therapy
Talk to your doctor about what treatment is best for you. With such a wide variety of options, treatment is possible; whether you decide to get surgery, or stick with taking medication.
Let Us Join Your Support System
A key step in managing COPD is staying on top of your medication regimen. It’s important to take COPD medications properly and as prescribed for optimal results. We care about your health, and we want to be a part of your support system.
This is why MedaCheck’s app, Habit, sends off an alert when it’s time to take your medication, along with a photo of the drug, the name of the medication, and any specific instructions to take the medication properly—because it’s not just about taking your medication on time, it’s about doing it the right way. We have our own hand held spirometers so that you can test your lung diffusion capacity in your own home! Want to learn more about MedaCheck’s easy-to-use system? If you’re a hospital, care center, healthcare organization or home care provider, employer or individual, visit www.medacheck.com.