Asthma And COPD

Frank Jircik, MD

Internists located in Burleson, TX

Dr. Frank Jircik and his staff specialize in the treatment of many pulmonary disorders including asthma and COPD. The doctor serves residents in many Texas communities, including those who live near Burleson.

Asthma and COPD Q & A

What are the Symptoms of COPD?

COPD stands for chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder. Shortness of breath and wheezing that occur after minimal amounts of strenuous activity are often the first indicators that a patient may have COPD or another chronic upper respiratory condition. Other symptoms that are indicative of this particular breathing disorder include tightness in the chest, chronic cough, poor circulation, build up of mucous and phlegm, and swelling in the lower extremities. Individuals who have several upper respiratory infections each year may be diagnosed with COPD if the doctor believes the infections are related to the other symptoms.

What are Common Causes of COPD?

COPD can be caused by any condition or activity that has an adverse effect on the lungs. Smoking is one of the most commonly recognized causes of COPD. Its ability to damage the lungs, even through second hand and residual smoke, can lead to COPD and other chronic lung conditions. COPD can also be caused by repeated upper respiratory infections that damage the lungs or have an adverse effect on how they function. Individuals who have severe allergies or asthma may be diagnosed with COPD later in life. This is also true for individuals who have had repeated cases of bronchitis and pneumonia.

How is Asthma Affected by Allergies?

Allergies are caused by the release of histamine. Histamine can also cause reactions within the lungs including the creation of mucous. The lungs react to allergens much in the same ways as the nasal passages. Over time, the increased sensitivity of the tissues and membranes in the airways can lead to chronic inflammation and the buildup of mucous. Allergy induced asthma can begin to appear as a result of a severe allergic reaction or if a person's allergies are chronic and cause a continued reaction within the upper respiratory system. Controlling a person's allergies may have a direct impact on the severity of their asthma symptoms.