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Each year, millions of adults and children, are impacted by lung disease. Dr. Judy Kuhn, with WakeMed Pulmonary and Critical Care, discusses some of the most common diseases and their symptoms. Addressing symptoms early can be beneficial in diagnosing and managing lung diseases.
Asthma, one of the most common lung diseases in the world, is defined as chronic airway inflammation with airflow obstruction and intermittent symptoms. It is more common in older females, and in those with “western” and “urban” lifestyles.
People with asthma typically experience symptoms after being exposed to their specific triggers, and symptoms are often worse at night. Triggers include:
COPD is characterized by persistent respiratory symptoms and airflow limitation due to airway abnormalities or emphysema. This is caused by excessive exposure to noxious particles or gases (most commonly cigarette smoke).
Obstructive Sleep Apnea causes repetitive episodes of partial or complete upper airway obstruction during sleep.
Pulmonary arterial hypertension is elevated blood pressure in the lungs. While men and women are both impacted by this disease, women have more severe symptoms.
Educating yourself on these diseases and their symptoms can be beneficial in getting an early diagnosis. If you experience any of these symptoms, contact your physician to determine if additional steps or testing need to be done.
Dr. Judy Kuhn is a pulmonologist with WakeMed Physician Practices – Pulmonology & Sleep Medicine.
3000 New Bern Ave.
Raleigh, NC 27610