Smoking related lung diseases

What are smoking related lung diseases?

There are many proven diseases that are caused, once a person starts smoking regularly. The main reason why smoking is injurious to health is because it hinders our body’s filtering of air and cleaning procedure of the lungs. That is why lungs are undoubtedly the most affected organ of a person who smokes. Smoking paralyzes cilia, an organ that is hairy and helps in cleaning of dirt and dust particles. When cilia is affected, mucus and toxin get accumulated in our lungs, resulting in congestion. In extreme conditions, it can become chronic bronchitis -- widely known as smokers cough.

As per the recent survey, it was found that 80% of people who smoked were affected by lung cancer. Smoking emerged as the undoubtful cause of lung cancer in many patients.

Some of the major smoking related lung diseases are:


Asthma is as a lung disease that narrows and inflames the airways in the lungs. It is of chronic nature and causes continous periods of wheezing, breathlessness, coughing, and chest pain . The airways are defined as tubes that carry air in and out of the lungs. The inflammation causes the airways to swell and become very sensitive. The airways strongly react to inhaled substances, and this reaction causes the muscle to tighten. The swelling can also make the cells to produce mucus that can further narrow the airways.


Due to continuous smoking, the lung structure of a person is affected. The elastic wall that our lungs have, breaks down, resulting in a minimum transfer of oxygen from air to our blood. This condition is medically known as emphysema. A person who is a chain smoker is likely to have some sort of emphysema, depending upon the various levels of infection in the lungs. Once the tissues that carry oxygen to our blood are damaged due to smoking, they cannot reform. The only corrective measure is to avoid smoking.

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)

Chronic bronchitis is a condition when inflammation happens in the bronchial tubes present in the lungs. The inflammation caused, narrows the tubes, which makes it difficult to breathe. It causes persistent cough often followed by mucus (sputum). Chronic bronchitis is another form of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

Lung cancer

The deadliest disease caused by smoking is lung cancer. It has resulted in numerous deaths over a period of time. The most important factor found in all the patients affected by lung cancer is smoking. Many people are not aware about the fact that even passive smoking is a reason for a person to suffer from lung cancer.


Symptoms of Asthma

Coughing mostly at night.
Shortness of breath.
Chest tightness.
Chest pain.
Pain or pressure ln the heart.

Symptoms of Emphysema

Dry cough or with phlegm.
Respiratory difficulty in breathing.
Fast or rapid breathing.
Shortness of breath.
Difficulty in walking.
Weight loss.
Sleeping disorders.

Symptoms of COPD

Prolonged cough.
Cough with mucus.
Short of breath, especially while exercising.
Tightness in your chest

Symptoms of Lung cancer

Coughing with blood.
Chest pain.
Weight loss.


Causes of Asthma

Cold air.
Respiratory infections.
Substances that are airborne.
Air pollutants.

Causes of Emphysema

Air pollution.
Dust and chemical fumes.
Marijuana and tobacco smoking

Causes of COPD

Inherited factors such as genes.
Exposure to industrial and chemical dust and fumes.

Causes of Lung Cancer

Pollution and occupational exposure.
Radon gas.
Passive smoking


Risks of Asthma

Being overweight.
Excessive smoking.
Exposure to types of pollution.

Risks of Emphysema

Exposure to outdoor and indoor pollution.
Exposure to secondhand smoke.

Risks of COPD

People who smoke.
Exposure to tobacco smoke.

Risks of Lung Cancer

Alcohol consumption.
Chronic inflammation.


Prevention of Asthma

Monitor breathing.
Identify and treat attacks.
Get vaccination for pneumonia and influenza.
Taking medication as prescribed.

Prevention of Emphysema

Maintaining a lifestyle that is healthy.
Avoiding exposure to smoke and pollution.
Receiving medical treatment for respiratory infections.

Prevention of COPD

Quit smoking.
Avoid exposure to irritants in the lungs.
Take vaccines

Prevention of Lung Cancer

Avoid secondhand smoke.
Take a diet full of fruits and vegetables.
Exercise regularly.

How is it diagnosed?

How to quit smoking?

Get sufficient data on anti-effects of quitting smoking. There will be repercussions, but be prepared.

Opt for some nicotine suppli...

How is it treated?


  • Treatment of Asthma

    At Medanta, following are the means to treat the disease:
    Long term asthma control medications include inhaled corticosteroids, leukotriene modifiers, combination inhalers, and theophylline
    Quick relief medications include oral and intravenous corticosteroids, atrovent, and short-acting beta agonists.
    Allergy medications: They include immunotherapy and Xolair.
    Bronchial Thermoplasty: This is a procedure to heat the insides of airways in the lungs with an electrode. This will limit the ability of airways to tighten, which makes breathing easier.

  • Treatment of Emphysema

    At Medanta, following are the means to treat the disease:
    Medications: They include bronchodilators, inhaled steroids, and antibiotics.
    Therapy: Few of the treatment therapies include nutrition therapy, supplemental oxygen, and pulmonary rehabilitation.
    Surgery: The treatment therapies include lung transplant and lung volume reduction therapy

  • Treatment of COPD

    At Medanta, following are the means to treat the disease:
    Medications: They include anticholinergics, oral corticosteroids, and Beta2- agonists.
    Antibiotics are also beneficial for the treatment of COPD.
    Surgery: Lung volume reduction surgery, lung transplant, and bullectomy are the various kinds of sugery beneficial for the treatment of COPD

  • Treatment of Lung Cancer

    At Medanta, following are the means to treat the disease:
    Chemotherapy: It makes use of cytotoxic drugs to destroy cancer cells.
    Radiotherapy: It is an effective procedure to treat lung cancer.
    Chemoadiotherapy: It is a combination of both chemotherapy and radiotherapy. One can also know about its possible side effects, if any.

When do I contact the doctor?

You should immediately contact a doctor, as you begin to experience symptoms like wheezing, weight loss, fatigue, chest pain, shortness of breath, and all of the ones stated above. All these symptoms will be treated just right with the help of our medical expertise at Medanta. 

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