What is COPD?

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a group of lung diseases that makes it very difficult to breathe due to blocked airways and damage to the lungs. COPD gets worse overtime.

Causes of COPD

COPD is almost always caused by smoking. Breathing chemical fumes, dust, air pollution and second hand smoke can also cause COPD because it damages the lungs.


The following are common symptoms of COPD.

  • long-lasting cough
  • coughing up mucus
  • shortness of breath


COPD can be diagnosed with the following:

  • physical examination
  • medical history
  • breathing test (spirometry)
  • chest x-rays


Treatment for COPD usually includes quiting smoking. This will keep the lungs from being damaged more. There are also medications and lung rehab programs to help people manage the disease. Consult your doctor for proper diagnosis and treatment.

For more information on the diagnosis and treatment of COPD or to schedule an appointment with an allergist or asthma specialist, call 1-800-778-9923 or visit the Allergy & Asthma Center location near you.