Lung infections are the most common cause of acute exacerbations. These infections can be viral or bacterial. Some specific viruses that cause COPD exacerbations are influenza, rhinovirus or adenovirus. Recent evidence suggests exacerbations of COPD are often caused by certain kinds of bacteria. These are known as mycoplasma and chlamydia.
Your health care provider may need to consider the risk of you getting an infection from one of these less common organisms. He/she will need to consider...
Much of the treatment for COPD includes things you can do for yourself.
Quitting smoking is the most important thing you can do to slow the disease and improve your quality of life.
Other things you can do that really make a difference including eating well, staying active, and avoiding triggers. To learn more, see Living With COPD.
The medicines used to treat COPD can be long-acting to help prevent symptoms or short-acting to help relieve
them. To learn more, see Medications.
Other treatment you may need
If COPD gets worse, you may need other treatment, such as:
Oxygen treatmentOxygen treatment. This involves getting extra oxygen through a face mask or through a small tube that fits just inside your nose. It can be done in the hospital or at home.
Treatment for muscle weakness and weight loss. Many people with
severe COPD have trouble keeping their weight up and their bodies strong. This
can be treated by paying attention to eating regularly and well.