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Why is it a problem for people with emphysema or chronic bronchitis to catch a cold?

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Catching a cold with emphysema or chronic bronchitis may lead to bacterial infections such as pneumonia because of the airway obstruction and the inability to cough up infected mucus.

Sometimes, people with COPD need to be hospitalized because of a respiratory infection and their symptoms. Treatment may include inhaled medications, oxygen, and antibiotics to treat any bacterial infection. Antibiotics do not treat a cold.

SOURCES: American Lung Association: ''Need Help For Treatment Decisions with COPD?'' and ''Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Fact Sheet.'' The National Heart Lung and Blood Institute: ''COPD: Learn to Breathe Better.'' Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD): GOLD Guidelines At-A-Glance Desk Reference.


Reviewed by Paul Boyce on March 15, 2019

SOURCES: American Lung Association: ''Need Help For Treatment Decisions with COPD?'' and ''Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Fact Sheet.'' The National Heart Lung and Blood Institute: ''COPD: Learn to Breathe Better.'' Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD): GOLD Guidelines At-A-Glance Desk Reference.


Reviewed by Paul Boyce on March 15, 2019

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Which cold treatment should I use with emphysema or chronic bronchitis?

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