Emphysema

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What is emphysema?
In the lung, there are many tiny air sacs (alveoli) that exchange carbon dioxide from your body with oxygen from the air we breathe. Emphysema is a disease that gradually damages the alveoli in your lungs, making it harder to breathe normally. Damage to the alveoli can’t be reversed, but there are treatments available to manage the symptoms and slow the progression of the disease. Above all, prevention is the best way to avoid emphysema, such as not smoking.

What causes emphysema?
Smoking, Frequent Exposure to Toxic Air Pollutants (chemicals, smoke, mold, etc.), and Second Hand Smoke.

What can emphysema lead to?
Collapsed Lung, Heart Disease, Large Holes in the Lung, and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).

What can you do to prevent it?

Exercise regularly, eat healthy foods, avoid smoking cigarettes, avoid environments of high exposure to toxic air pollution.


Resources
WebMD http://www.webmd.com/lung/emphysema
Mayo Clinic http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/emphysema/basics/definition/con-20014218
American Lung Association http://www.lung.org/lung-disease/copd/about-copd/


Special Thanks
Derek Chang graduated with a Bachelors degree in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Utah. Go Utes! He was born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah. He aspires to become a physician-entrepreneur to find and create new ways of improving overall patient health. He enjoys skiing, hiking, camping, reading books, meeting new people, and learning anything new.

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