Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease involves abnormalities in the lungs that make it difficult to exhale normally. Excessive inflammatory processes eventually lead to these abnormalities in the lung’s structure that permanently obstruct airflow. Two common conditions leading to COPD are chronic bronchitis and emphysema.
Cough can be acute or chronic. The most common cause of an acute cough is an acute respiratory infection. Chronic cough is defined as a cough lasting for more than 3 weeks. A chronic cough may be a signal that a significant health problem exists.
Asthma is the most common chronic disease in children, but can also affect adults. Asthma is a condition in which the bronchial tubes in the lungs react to stimuli and become inflamed. This produces symptoms such as shortness of breath, coughing, wheezing, and tightness in the chest. Severe asthma is a serious health concern that can lead to respiratory failure or even death.
Lung cancer is caused by the rapid growth and division of cells in the lungs. When cells divide too much and too fast, a tumor forms. If the tumor is confined and does not invade surrounding tissues or organs, it is considered benign. By contrast, if the tumor spreads to surrounding tissues or organs, it is considered malignant, or cancerous.
Difficulty breathing is uncomfortable, tiring, and can be a sign of a serious lung condition. To make sure you are not facing a more serious health problem, consulting a Pulmonologist may be the first step in getting you back on track.
Other conditions that may require a Pulmonologist
- ARDS (Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome)
- Cystic Fibrosis
- Coughing Up Blood
- Obstructive Sleep Apnea
- Excess Fluid in the Lungs (Pleural Effusion)
- Sarcoidosis (a chronic lung disease)
- Solitary Pulmonary Nodule
- Pulmonary Hypertension
- Pulmonary Embolism