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Emphysema is a condition of the lungs in which the air sacs become damaged. This lung condition develops as a consequence of years of smoking and causes shortness of breath.

Read on to understand all about emphysema – its types, causes, symptoms, treatment and more.

Emphysema types
Emphysema types

There are four main types of emphysema:

It’s essential to have a base knowledge of the types to understand the condition better.

Emphysema symptoms
Emphysema symptoms

Emphysema is part of the group of chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases (COPD). As a result, the patient can experience the following persistent symptoms gradually.

Individuals experiencing symptoms should reach out to a doctor at the earliest to get diagnosed.

Emphysema causes
Emphysema causes

Smoking is the primary cause of emphysema besides inhalation of air pollutants, marijuana smoke, chemical fumes, and genetic deficiency of a protein known as Alpha-1 antitrypsin.

With continued smoking or inhalation of smoke, the inner walls of the air sacs become weak and eventually rupture. Due to this, large air spaces form and decrease the lungs’ surface area along with the amount of oxygen inhaled.

Now, because of the damaged air sacs, when exhaling, the old air gets stuck and doesn’t leave much space for the entrance of fresh oxygenated air.

Now, how do doctors diagnose the condition? We discuss methods of Emphysema diagnosis in the next section.

Emphysema diagnosis
Emphysema diagnosis

Since it is difficult to diagnose emphysema only based on the symptoms experienced, doctors also conduct several tests, such as the ones mentioned below:

Once a patient is diagnosed with the condition, they need to undergo Emphysema treatment. We look at the treatment options available in the following section.

Emphysema treatment
Emphysema treatment

The treatment will not cure the condition completely. Instead, it helps to slow down the progression of the damage to the air sacs and lungs.

Some of the treatments for emphysema include:

Medications

Alternative therapies

Surgery

Emphysema prevention
Emphysema prevention

One can prevent or considerably reduce the risk of emphysema by doing the following:

Conclusion
Conclusion

Emphysema is a chronic condition of the lungs in which your air sacs become so damaged that you experience shortness of breath besides symptoms like chronic coughing, mucus production, etc.

If you continue to experience the symptoms for a long time, you should immediately reach out to an experienced pulmonologist.

Our pulmonologists at the CK Birla Hospital, understand that  emphysema can feel suffocating and draining, both physically and mentally. Thus, they diagnose and treat your lung condition compassionately, using cutting-edge equipments and applying latest medical techniques. For personalised emphysema treatment, visit the CK Birla Hospital near you or book an appointment with Dr Kuldeep Grover.

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