Emphysema is a form of chronic (long-term) lung disease. People with emphysema have difficulty breathing from a limitation in blowing air out. There are multiple causes of emphysema, but smoking is by far the most common.
Emphysema is the main type of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Although emphysema has no cure, quitting smoking reduces the rate of emphysema disease progression.
Don't panic if
you start to have a flare-up. If you are prepared, you may be able to get it
under control. Work with your doctor to make a plan for dealing with a COPD
Take your medicines as your doctor says:
First, use your quick-relief inhaler. If your symptoms don't get better after you use your medicine,
have someone take you to the emergency room. Call an ambulance if
With inhaled medicines, a spacer or a nebulizer may help you get more medicine to your lungs. Ask your doctor
or pharmacist how to use them properly. Practice using the spacer in front of a
mirror before you have a flare-up. This may help you get the medicine into your
If your doctor has given you steroid pills, take them as directed.