It seems to be common in many senior hospice clients.
Symptoms (from PubMedHealth)
- Cough with mucus
- Shortness of breath (dyspnea) that gets worse with mild activity
- Frequent respiratory infections
Since the symptoms of COPD develop slowly, some people may be unaware that they are sick.
I had a friend, sat with him on a Board of Directors, and he had this cough for the two years I knew him. It just gradually got worse. It really is chronic bronchitis. Very sad to listen to and difficult to manage.
ScienceDaily (May 15, 2011) — Changes in the ability of lung cells to divide may play a role in initiating or prolonging lung tissue inflammation, a hallmark of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), according to a study conducted by researchers in France.
During its normal life cycle, a cell will divide many times; however, its ability to divide decreases as it ages. This cellular aging process, or senescence, can vary by cell, and can also be affected by disease processes. In this study, the researchers looked specifically at endothelial cells, which border the tiny blood vessels in the lungs and create a barrier between blood and tissue. (Read more)