TREATMENTS AND TESTS
Asthma is a condition in which your airways narrow and swells and produce extra mucus. This can make breathing difficult and trigger coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath.
Asthma can't be cured, but its symptoms can be controlled. Because asthma often changes over time, it's important that you work with your doctor to track your signs and symptoms and adjust treatment as needed.
Asbestosis (as-bes-TOE-sis) is a chronic lung disease caused by inhaling asbestos fibers. Prolonged exposure to these fibers can cause lung tissue scarring and shortness of breath.
Bronchiectasis is a condition where the bronchial tubes of your lungs are permanently damaged, widened, and thickened. These damaged air passages allow bacteria and mucus to build up and pool in your lungs. ... There is no cure for bronchiectasis, but it is manageable. With treatment, you can typically live a normal life.
Chronic bronchitis is the inflammation (swelling) and irritation of the bronchial tubes. These tubes are the airways that carry air to and from the air sacs in your lungs. The irritation of the tubes causes mucus to build up.
There is no cure for chronic bronchitis, and treatment is aimed at reducing symptoms and improving lung function. Medications to help suppress the cough or loosen and clear secretions may be helpful.
A chronic cough is when a cough lasts longer than 8 weeks in adults or 4 weeks in children. Common causes include asthma, allergies, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), or bronchitis. Less commonly, it can be a sign of a more severe condition, such as a heart cough or lung disease.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a chronic inflammatory lung disease that causes obstructed airflow from the lungs. Symptoms include breathing difficulty, cough, mucus (sputum) production and wheezing. It's caused by long-term exposure to irritating gases or particulate matter, most often from cigarette smoke. People with COPD are at increased risk of developing heart disease, lung cancer and a variety of other conditions.
COPD is treatable. With proper management, most people with COPD can achieve good symptom control and quality of life, as well as reduced risk of other associated conditions.
Emphysema is a disease that damages the air sacs and may damage the small airways in the lungs. This significantly reduces your ability to release the normal amount of air from the lungs, which causes shortness of breath and prevents the lungs from delivering oxygen into the blood.
INTERSTITIAL LUNG DISEASE
Interstitial Lung Disease (ILD) is an umbrella term used for a large group of diseases that cause scarring (fibrosis) of the lungs. The scarring causes stiffness in the lungs which makes it difficult to breathe and get oxygen to the bloodstream.
Lung cancer is the uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells in one or both of the lungs. Cigarette smoking causes most lung cancers when smoke gets in the lungs.
The large majority of people who get lung cancer have smoked for many years.
A chest infection is an infection that affects your lungs, either in the larger airways (bronchitis) or in the smaller air sacs (pneumonia). There is a build-up of pus and fluid (mucus), and the airways become swollen, making it difficult for you to breathe.
Small masses of tissue in the lung — are quite common. They appear as round, white shadows on a chest X-ray or computerized tomography (CT) scan.
OCCUPATIONAL LUNG DISEASES
Occupational lung diseases are occupational, or work-related, lung conditions that have been caused or made worse by the materials a person is exposed to within the workplace. It includes a broad group of diseases, including occupational asthma, industrial bronchitis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), bronchiolitis obliterans, inhalation injury, interstitial lung diseases (such as pneumoconiosis, hypersensitivity pneumonitis, lung fibrosis), infections, lung cancer and mesothelioma. These diseases can be caused directly or due to immunological response to an exposure to a variety of dusts, chemicals, proteins or organisms.
PNEUMONIA & PNEUMONITIS
Pneumonitis (noo-moe-NIE-tis) is a general term that refers to inflammation of lung tissue.
Technically, pneumonia is a type of pneumonitis because the infection causes inflammation. Pneumonitis, however, is usually used by doctors to refer to noninfectious causes of lung inflammation.
Pleural effusion, sometimes referred to as “water on the lungs,” is the build-up of excess fluid between the layers of the pleura outside the lungs. The pleura are thin membranes that line the lungs and the inside of the chest cavity and act to lubricate and facilitate breathing.
Pulmonary embolism (PE) is a blockage of an artery in the lungs by a substance that has moved from elsewhere in the body through the bloodstream (embolism). Symptoms of a PE may include shortness of breath, chest pain particularly upon breathing in, and coughing up blood.
Pulmonary fibrosis is a lung disease that occurs when lung tissue becomes damaged and scarred. This thickened, stiff tissue makes it more difficult for your lungs to work properly. As pulmonary fibrosis worsens, you become progressively more short of breath.
The lung damage caused by pulmonary fibrosis can't be repaired, but medications and therapies can sometimes help ease symptoms and improve quality of life. For some people, a lung transplant might be appropriate.
Pulmonary hypertension is a type of high blood pressure that affects the arteries in your lungs and the right side of your heart.
In some people, pulmonary hypertension slowly gets worse and can be life-threatening.
Although there's no cure for some types of pulmonary hypertension, treatment can help reduce symptoms and improve your quality of life.
Sarcoidosis is a disease characterized by the growth of tiny collections of inflammatory cells (granulomas) in any part of your body — most commonly the lungs and lymph nodes.
There is no cure for sarcoidosis, but most people do very well with no treatment or only modest treatment. In some cases, sarcoidosis goes away on its own. However, sarcoidosis may last for years and may cause organ damage.
SHORTNESS OF BREATH
Shortness of breath — known medically as dyspnea — is often described as an intense tightening in the chest, air hunger, difficulty breathing, breathlessness or a feeling of suffocation. Very strenuous exercise, extreme temperatures, obesity and higher altitude all can cause shortness of breath in a healthy person.
Tuberculosis (TB) is a potentially serious infectious disease that mainly affects your lungs. The bacteria that cause tuberculosis are spread from one person to another through tiny droplets released into the air via coughs and sneezes.