About COPD

What is COPD?

COPD, or Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, is a lung disease that causes breathing related problems. COPD refers to a group of diseases that cause airflow blockage, such as chronic bronchitis and emphysema.

What Causes COPD?

Cigarette smoking is the main cause of COPD. Other contributing factors can be:

-a genetic disorder called Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency

-second-hand smoke

-air pollution

-having a series of lung infections as a child

What are the signs and symptoms of COPD?

-shortness of breath

-chronic cough


-coughing up mucus

-frequent chest infections

Can COPD be treated?

YES. While there is no cure for COPD, there are treatments available that can slow down the disease and treat the symptoms. The most important and most effective way to prevent or to slow down the progression of COPD is to stop smoking. Additional treatment options can be discussed with a pulmonary doctor who specializes in COPD.

How is COPD diagnosed?

A spirometry test is an effective and reliable diagnostic breathing test usually performed in a doctor’s office. During the test you will be asked to blow, into a tube attached to a machine, for as long and as hard as you can. The machine measures how long it takes you to blow all of the air out of your lungs. The longer it takes to blow the air out, the more blocked the airways.

Click here to download our COPD Brochure (pdf)

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