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Revista Portuguesa de Pneumologia

versão impressa ISSN 0873-2159


LAIZO, Artur. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: A review. Rev Port Pneumol [online]. 2009, vol.15, n.6, pp.1157-1166. ISSN 0873-2159.

COPD is a preventable and treatable disease caused by exposure to tobacco smoke and poisonous gases. It is characterised by progressive obstruction of the airflow, irreversible once lesions occur in the parenchyma. This article aims to systematically review the disease and its treatment. Discussion: Smoking is the main cause of COPD and leads to decreased oxygenation via lung hyperinflation with reduced airflow as a systemic inflammatory process. This reduces resistance to fatigue of the skeletal musculature, leading to hypoxemia, decreased peripheral blood flow and also miscarriages and premature births. Inflammatory markers such as interleukins and TNF-alpha maintain the systemic picture. While smoking cessation improves hypoxemia and exercise intolerance, it does not repair damaged tissue. COPD is a serious disease which can be avoided by a wider understanding by the population of the harm smoking causes.

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