What is COPD?
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis and is also known as: chronic obstructive lung disease. Is a progressive disease that gets worse over time and limits airflow to and from the lungs, causing shortness of breath. This shortness of breath is called dyspnea. COPD produces large amounts of mucus (a slimy substance), wheezing, shortness of breath, chest tightness, and other symptoms. COPD is the 3rd leading cause of death in the United States. COPD ranks as the 6th leading cause of death world wide a number that is expected to rise of the coming years as more countries become more industrialized.
What Causes COPD?
The number one cause of COPD is cigarette smoking. The majority of individuals with COPD are smokers or former smokers. Smoking and the sticky tar and particles associated with smoking clog the tubes that carry air in and out of your lungs. This sticky substance clogs the lungs and causes the airways to become partially blocked, which makes it hard to get air in and out. Other known factors of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease include: breathing chemical fumes, dust, or air pollution over a long period of time. There is also a correlation that secondhand smoke can also trigger COPD. Other less common cause of COPD includes asthma and rare genetic conditions.
How is chronic obstructive pulmonary disease diagnosed? In medical practice, Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is diagnosed by a characteristically low airflow on lung function tests. The diagnosis of COPD is confirmed by spirometry, a test that measures the forced expiratory volume in one second which is the greatest volume of air that can be breathed out in the first second of a large breath. Spirometry also measures the forced vital capacity, which is the greatest volume of air that can be breathed out in a whole large breath.
Who should be screened for COPD? The diagnosis of COPD should be considered in anyone who has dyspnea, chronic cough or sputum production, and/or a history of exposure to risk factors for the disease such as regular tobacco smokers aged 60+.
COPD Therapy and Disease Management
Unfortunately there is no cure for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. A severe case of Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease makes performing basic daily tasks such as doing light housework, taking a walk, even washing and dressing extremely difficult. There are a few medical products you can use at home to help make living with the disease a little less burdensome. These medical products include; portable oxygen concentrators, home nebulizers and Cpap machines. You can also strengthen your body using diet and exercise to help your body feel better. You should stop smoking immediately with a COPD diagnosis.
COPD Therapy Products
Home Oxygen Concentrators Oxygen Concentrators are medical devices that provide greater mobility to patients that are dependent upon an external oxygen tanks to breathe. Oxygen therapy patients, such as those with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease "COPD" for short, suffer from a progressive lung disease that makes it hard to breathe. "Progressive" means the disease gets worse over time. An COPD therapy patient without a home concentrator would be dependent upon large bulky oxygen tanks.
Portable Oxygen Concentrators Many people with Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease need supplemental oxygen therapy. Regrettably, some people who use portable oxygen therapy are wary of traveling with oxygen. So they opt to stay at home living a life of seclusion and dependent on others for life's necessities. Wouldn't it be better instead of staying home that you could go out see friends, go out to the restaurant, or enjoy a vacation?
CPAP Machines & Accessories Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) a machine typically is used for people who have breathing problems like those needing COPD therapy, such as sleep apnea. We stock a wide range of CPAP machines and CPAP masks and accessories. CPAP machines disburse air pressure at an average or constant level to keep the airway open, helping the patient to breathe without difficulty during sleep.