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What is emphysema? 

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Emphysema is considered a fatal disease of the lungs. Smoking is the most common cause of emphysema. It occurs in those who have been addicted to smoking for many years and in people who regularly breathe in dust areas.

Emphysema and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) are parts of lung diseases. Once emphysema develops, it is not easy to reverse. So, it is essential to keep yourself away from smoking. This disease destroys the air sacs (alveoli) found in the lungs. This results in a chronic cough and difficulty breathing meriting a visit to a Pulmonologist in Lahore.

Alveoli are little, thin-walled, and very sensitive air sacs located deep inside the lungs at the end of bronchial tubes.

Causes of emphysema:

Smoking can also be called the number one factor for emphysema. Because of this, the fatal disease has become the most preventable type of respiratory illness. Air pollution in residential places, workshops, genetic factors, and respiratory infections can be vital in growing emphysema.

Smoking is injurious to health. This bad habit destroys lung tissues and also confuses the airways. Swollen airways and mucus production affect the respiratory system very severely.

Some leading causes of emphysema are given below:

1- Tobacco smoke.                                               

2- Air pollution.

3- Chemical fumes and dust.

4- strong-smelling plants whose dried leaves are chewed.

An inherited weakness of a protein that protects the flexible system in the lungs. So it is called alpha-1- antitrypsin dearth emphysema. Factors that increase your risk of emphysema include:

1- Smokers are more likely to have this disease.

2- If you breathe in a dusty environment, the risk of illness increases gradually.

3- Breathing indoor pollutants, such as fumes from heating fuel can do more your risk of emphysema.

Symptoms of emphysema.

In the beginning, you can have no symptoms or only mild symptoms. As the disease grows worse, your symptoms generally become more severe.

Some people with emphysema have recurrent respiratory infections such as cold and flu. In difficult situations, this disease can also cause weight loss, weakness in your lower muscles or tissues, and swelling in your ankles, feet, or legs.

Many people had emphysema for years without knowing it. Some of its early signs are shortness of breath and coughing, especially during exercise or physical activity. This disease becomes so intense that it is challenging to breathe all the time, even at rest.

Some other symptoms may include:

  • Depression.
  •  Shortness of breath
  • Frequent coughing or wheezing.
  • A whistling of high-pitched sound during breathing.
  • Tightness in your chest.
  • Ongoing tiredness.
  • A cough that produces a lot of mucus.
  • Exhaustion.

Many people may develop bluish-gray lips or fingernails from the lake of oxygen. If this happens, contact an expert physician immediately.

Treatment and precautions:

There is no treatment for emphysema. Instead, the cure focuses on helping patients breathe easier by relieving symptoms. The given treatments may be used alone or in combination in treating emphysema medications.

There are also many kinds of medications that help to treat emphysema.


These medicines relax the muscles around your airways and facilitate breathing in the human body. Hand-inhaled bronchodilators have more immediate results and fewer ground effects than oral medications.

Quitting smoking:

If you smoke, the most crucial step you can take in treating emphysema is to quit smoking. It is never too late to quit. An online pulmonologist can help you quit smoking by prescribing medications that will help you quit smoking.

Anti-inflammatory medications:

These medicines can play a vital role in reducing inflammation in the airways. However, the use of these drugs can have side effects that include:

Osteoporosis, hypertension, high blood sugar, fat redistribution.

Oxygen therapy:

Oxygen therapy is recommends for patients whose lungs are not getting enough oxygen to the blood. These patients cannot absorb enough oxygen from the atmosphere. So the doctors provide them with oxygen through a machine.


Surgery benefits people affected by emphysema. It is usually the last cure for people with more severe symptoms that have not recovered from medication.

There are different types of surgery used in treating emphysema

  • Bullectomy
  • Bronchoscopic Lung Volume Reduction (BLVR)
  • Lung volume Reduction Surgery (LVRS)
  • Lung Transplant.


The best way to reduce further problems is to prevent respiratory infections by:

  • To practice suitable hand washing methods.
  • To keep breathing equipment clean.
  • Keep your house free of dust.
  • Following a doctor-prescribed exercise program.
  • Brushing and flossing teeth daily.
  • Avoid irritants such as cigarette smoke, pollution, strong perfumes, dust, cleaning products, etc.

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