How Asthma Affects Your Airways
Asthma is a complicated disease, and doctors don’t completely understand its causes. But it has two main components: inflammation and muscle constriction.
Asthma affects the airways, the bronchial tubes that carry air into the lungs. In people with asthma, the lining of these airways becomes inflamed. No one is sure why this first develops. But certain allergy triggers or irritants begin to trigger this swelling.
If you take long-term control medicines — like inhaled corticosteroids — you can reduce this swelling and keep the airways healthy. But if your asthma goes untreated, problems develop. Over time, this constant inflammation can destroy the surface layer of the airways, says Hugh H. Windom, MD, associate clinical professor of immunology at the University of South Florida.
“The surface layer acts as a kind of filter,” Windom says. “But once it’s gone, all of the pollutants and allergens have direct access into the lungs.” So asthma can cause damage to the airways that, in turn, makes the asthma worse.
Asthma also affects the muscles that surround the airways. During an attack, these muscles tighten and further restrict the amount of air getting into the lungs.
Eventually, the constant inflammation and muscle constriction can have irreversible effects.
Lung Changes That Show On An X
Sometimes doctors might find some unusual changes on your chest x-ray. Your doctor might have arranged an x-ray for other reasons and you might not have any symptoms.
Changes on a chest x-ray dont always mean that you have lung cancer. There can be other causes, such as an infection. But your doctor might arrange other tests to look further at the;changes.
Easy Screening May Help
If lung cancer is detected at an early stage, when there typically are no symptoms, its more likely to be successfully treated.
Low-dose computer tomography scans have been found to save more lives than chest X-rays when theyre used to screen people with a higher risk for lung cancer.
LDCT scans, which use low amounts of radiation, help identify abnormal areas in the lungs that could indicate cancer.
The American Cancer Societys lung cancer screening guidelines recommend annual LDCT scans for higher-risk people between the ages of 55 and 74 who meet each of the following conditions:
- currently smoke or have smoked within the past 15 years
- have a 30-pack-a-year or more smoking history
- receive counseling to help quit if a current smoker
- told by their healthcare provider of the benefits and harms of LDCT scans
- have access to a facility that performs lung cancer screening
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Blood Clots: Dvt And Pe
Someone with lung cancer is more likely to get a blood clot in their legs or arms and lungs . We don’t know exactly why. The cancer could cause inflammation that triggers the clotting process, or chemicals from the tumor itself might cause clots. Your doctor may do tests if you have a blood clot and other symptoms of cancer, too, like unexplained weight loss. ÃÂ;
Metastatic Lung Cancer Symptoms
Metastatic lung cancer symptoms depend on the part of the body to which the cancer has spread, as well as the size and location. Sometimes, metastatic disease may not cause any symptoms, though about 30 percent to 40 percent of people with lung cancer will have symptoms of metastasis.
- If the cancer has spread to the bones, it may cause bone pain, often in the vertebrae or ribs. Other symptoms include fractures, constipation or decreased alertness due to high calcium levels.
- If the liver is affected, symptoms may include nausea, extreme fatigue, increased abdominal girth, swelling of the feet and hands due to fluid collection, and yellowing or itchy skin.
- If either the brain or spinal cord is affected, symptoms may include headache, blurred or double vision, difficulty with speech or seizures.
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Could It Be A Stroke
She continued to struggle until January 2018, when suddenly her symptoms began to resemble a stroke while she was traveling in Florida. The entire left side of my body shut down. They rushed me to a nearby hospital, and while looking for the signs of a stroke with scans they found a mass in my brain. They said they werent sure if it was a virus or a secondary massI knew that wasnt good.
Morris was transferred to a teaching hospital that had an available neurosurgeon, and after more scans, doctors located a six-centimeter tumor in her lung; it was the origin of the tumor in her brain. The scans also revealed tumors in her spine, pancreas, kidney, liver, and lymph nodes. I had stage 4 primary lung cancer with metastasis to the brain. The neurosurgeon said I should have received a CT scan the second time I complained of symptoms because lung tumors hide in x-rays, theyre invisible.
Secondhand Smoke Harms Children
Secondhand smoke can cause serious health problems in children.2,4
- Studies show that older children whose parents smoke get sick more often. Their lungs grow less than children who do not breathe secondhand smoke, and they get more bronchitis and pneumonia.
- Wheezing and coughing are more common in children who breathe secondhand smoke.
- Secondhand smoke can trigger an asthma attack in a child. Children with asthma who are around secondhand smoke have more severe and frequent asthma attacks. A severe asthma attack can put a childs life in danger.
- Children whose parents smoke around them get more ear infections. They also have fluid in their ears more often and have more operations to put in ear tubes for drainage.
Parents can help protect their children from secondhand smoke by taking the following actions:9
- Do not allow anyone to smoke anywhere in or near your home.
- Do not allow anyone to smoke in your car, even with the window down.
- Make sure your childrens day care centers and schools are tobacco-free.
- If your state still allows smoking in public areas, look for restaurants and other places that do not allow smoking. No-smoking sections do not protect you and your family from secondhand smoke.
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Strengths And Limitations Of This Study
Broad search strategy to identify a range of studies that have investigated the association between asthma co-occurring respiratory diseases and allergic conditions and lung cancer.
The review will focus on a wide-range of co-occurring diseases that explain some potential aetiological pathways linking asthma and lung cancer.
Use of Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses-Protocol guidelines, tested tools for data extraction and assessment of data quality, and risk of bias analysis.
This review is not unique in the sense that other researchers have examined the evidence linking asthma and lung disease. However, this review will further previous work by only including studies that have accounted for co-occurring respiratory and allergic conditions, and investigating heterogeneity by study and patient-specific factors.
Lung Cancer Causes & Signs
There are a various risk factors that are linked to lung cancer. The most common known causes are as follows:
Cigarette smoking is probably the most closely related link to developing lung cancer. A person who smokes two packs or more of cigarettes per day has a one in seven chance of developing lung cancer. Those that smoke one pack of cigarettes per day have a twenty-five times greater chance of developing lung cancer than a non-smoker. In addition, those people that smoke a pipe or cigar have a five times greater chance of developing lung cancer than a non-smoker.
The risk of developing lung cancer increases with the number of cigarettes smoked over your lifetime. Cigarette smoking damages the cells in your lungs. The moment you stop smoking, your lungs begin healing themselves, replacing damaged cells with healthy, normal cells. Your risk of developing lung cancer begins decreasing almost immediately when you quit smoking. Every year that you do not smoke, your chances of developing lung cancer drop further. By the fifteenth year, your chances of developing lung cancer are about the same as those of a person who has never smoked.
Scientists estimate that as many as 1% of all lung cancer deaths are attributable to air pollution. They believe that prolonged exposure to very polluted air can raise the risks of developing lung cancer to about the levels of a passive smoker.
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Superior Vena Cava Syndrome
Tumors in your upper right lung may put pressure on your superior vena cava, a large vein that carries blood from your head and arms to your heart. The pressure may cause blood to back up in your veins.
The symptoms of superior vena cava syndrome may include:
- swelling in your face, neck, arms, and upper chest, sometimes making your skin turn bluish-red
- dizziness or loss of consciousness
Its very important to talk with a doctor right away if you have any of these symptoms, since superior vena cava syndrome can be life threatening.
Finding The Right Treatment
Morris allowed the surgeons at Cedars-Sinai to remove the tumor on one conditionthat they send part of it to Dr. Nagourney for functional profiling testing in his lab. The difference with Dr. Nagourney is that he tests your tissue with various treatments to see if theyre effective before you get them. He can tell you whether your cancer will respond to a treatment or not. Mine was not responsive to chemo, so what they wanted to do at the hospital would have killed me. I have an ALK mutation that will only respond to targeted therapy.
Armed with specific knowledge of Morris cancer, Dr. Nagourney prescribed a targeted therapy combination of Alectinib and Metformina medication typically used for diabetics; some research suggests it can target certain types of cancer. Ive been on the treatment almost a year and my tumors have shrunk 87 percent. Im going to beat this. Morris says she wants others to know there is hopeand to choose their doctors wisely. Dont pay attention to the statistics: Theyre wrong if you find the right doctor. Youre an individual, not a number. Dont make fear-based decisions, and dont let anyone steal your joycancer doesnt have to be a death sentence. Be proactive: Here are smart habits that can help prevent lung cancer.
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Lung Cancer Symptoms Vs Asthma Quick Comparison
Lung cancer includes a group of diseases in which lung cells exhibit abnormal and uncontrolled growth starting the lungs, while asthma is a disease caused by inflammation and/or mucus that decreases or blocks the breathing passages of the lungs.
Asthma is usually an acute problem triggered by many different substances, mainly affecting the lungs. Lung cancer is an ongoing disease that can metastasize to other organs like the liver, bones or the brain. Asthma is considered a part of a lung condition termed chronic obstructive pulmonary disease , while lung cancer is not considered a part of COPD.
Both lung cancers and asthma can have symptoms of cough and shortness of breath; wheezing usually is associated with asthma, while chest pain and coughing up blood is more associated with lung cancers.
About 90% of lung cancers are associated with smoking, while causes or triggers of asthma vary from individual to individual . The exact cause of asthma is not known.
Many asthma attacks can self-resolve or resolve with medication ; lung cancers do not resolve and require extensive medical treatments and/or surgery. Severe lung cancers can be fatal.
The Different Kinds Of Bad Breath Part 1: Lung Breath
I’m going to do a series of posts regarding the different types of bad breath . I’ve spoken before about bad breath — extensively, in fact — but I’ve never really broken it down quite this way before.
I want to do this because bad breath is pretty misunderstood by people. Just like “general body odor,” bad breath can come from a myriad of different places and have countless causes. But people tend to think of bad breath differently — they think it’s all in the mouth, and that some gum will solve the problem. That just isn’t true; bad breath can indeed come from the mouth, but it also comes from the tonsils, the lungs, the stomach, etc. And gum doesn’t do such a good job in hiding these.
Here are the different types of bad breath I’ll be discussing:
- Lung breath
- Stomach breath
- Tonsil and other mouth breath
- Exhaustion breath
Okay, let’s start today with the lungs. Yes, the lungs. I realize this isn’t usually what people expect when they think of bad breath, but the lungs can definitely play a part in bad breath. Not a HUGE part, mind you , but the lungs do play a role for some people. And the frustrating part is bad breath from the lungs doesn’t go away when you brush your teeth, etc., making the lungs something you should definitely be aware of if you indeed suffer from bad breath.
Until next time, keep smiling. For more by Thomas P. Connelly, D.D.S., .
For more on dental health, .
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Secondhand Smoke Causes Sids
Sudden Infant Death Syndrome is the sudden, unexplained, unexpected death of an infant in the first year of life. SIDS is the leading cause of death in otherwise healthy infants.6;Secondhand smoke increases the risk for SIDS.2,4
- Smoking by women during pregnancy increases the risk for SIDS.2,4,7
- Infants who are exposed to secondhand smoke after birth are also at greater risk for SIDS.2,4
- Chemicals in secondhand smoke appear to affect the brain in ways that interfere with its regulation of infants breathing.2,4
- Infants who die from SIDS have higher concentrations of nicotine in their lungs and higher levels of cotinine than infants who die from other causes.2,4
Parents can help protect their babies from SIDS by taking the following three actions:8
- Do not smoke during pregnancy.
- Do not smoke or allow smoking in your home or around your baby.
- Place your baby on his or her back for all sleep timesnaps and at night.
Different Types Of Non
Some of the different types of non-small cell cancer include:
- squamous cell carcinoma generally discovered earlier than other lung cancers and has the best outcome after treatment
- adenocarcinoma now the most common type in both men and women. Its rise may be related to changing patterns of smoking, including the use of filtered cigarettes
- large cell carcinoma named for its large, rounded cells visible under the microscope. It is sometimes known as ‘undifferentiated carcinoma’
- bronchiolo-alveolar cell carcinoma one of the less common types of cancer.
Sometimes, it is not possible to tell which type someone has because when the cells are looked at under a microscope, they are not developed enough.;
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Shoulder Pain As A Symptom
Unfortunately, shoulder pain related to lung cancer or mesothelioma can be very similar or identical to that of conditions such as arthritis. If you have any question at all about shoulder pain, it’s better to be safe and talk to your doctor. Yet, there are a few symptoms that make lung cancer more likely.
Symptoms that may be more concerning for lung cancer include shoulder pain that’s worse at night, pain that occurs at rest, and pain that’s not associated with any loss of motion with activity.
Shoulder pain is also more likely to be something non-skeletal if you do not recall any injury or activities in which you may have overused your shoulder.
Shoulder pain is also more likely to be a symptom;of lung cancer if you have other symptoms of lung cancer, such as shortness of breath a persistent cough, wheezing, hoarseness, coughing up blood, fatigue, or if you are losing weight for no reason.
Keep in mind that the symptoms of lung cancer in women and symptoms of lung cancer in non-smokers are often less typical than those in menand sometimes very vague, such as the gradual onset shortness of breath with activity and fatigue.
Many people dismiss the early symptoms of lung cancer as being due to age-related changes in exercise tolerance, weight gain, or being too sedentary.
Lung Conditions That Mimic Asthma
So, which diseases or health issues could be causing you these issues? Thats what we are hopefully going to find out now.
Take a look at these examples of common lung conditions which are very similar to asthma and see if any of them sound familiar to you.
1- Bronchitis The first condition were going to be looking at today is Bronchitis. Bronchitis is a disease which affects the bronchi in your windpipe.
The bronchi are tubes that are attached to the windpipe, and this condition occurs as a result of inflammation.
When the bronchi swell up and become infected, your body responds by producing additional mucus. It is trying to help, but ironically, it is this extra mucus that causes the problems.
As you know, when you have too much mucus, your body tries to expel it, and you end up coughing and wheezing. There are two forms of bronchitis.
Theres acute bronchitis and chronic bronchitis. Acute bronchitis is the less-severe of the two, and it normally only lasts a week or two. It normally occurs after a cold.
Chronic bronchitis is the one to watch, as this lasts for months and causes severe coughing and trouble breathing. Extreme cases require antibiotics to kill the infection, otherwise, the condition clears up within three weeks usually.
2- COPD COPD may sound like a Police force from the US, but it is actually a term which is used to describe long-lasting lung conditions such as emphysema, which we will look at later, and bronchitis, which we just covered.
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