Archbold Hosts Health Talk on Symptoms and Treatment of Asthma and COPD

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Archbold Hosts Health Talk on Symptoms and Treatment of Asthma and COPD

Friday, July 18, 2014

Tens of millions of people in the U.S. suffer from some form of lung disease. Two of the most common types of lung disease are asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), both of which are prevalent in Georgia. 

Asthma is a chronic lung disease in which airways are persistently inflamed and may occasionally spasm, causing wheezing and shortness of breath.  Because of chronic inflammation, your lungs are more sensitive to things in the environment known as triggers.  Some examples of triggers are a common cold, the weather, dust, chemicals, smoke or pet dander.

“Asthma can occur in both men and women, young and old,” said Johnny Belenchia MD, pulmonologist at Archbold Pulmonary Medicine and Critical Care Services.  “The exact cause is unknown but asthma does run in families and environmental factors do play a role.”

COPD is also a chronic lung condition defined by the inability to exhale normally which causes breathing to be difficult.  There are two main forms of COPD, chronic bronchitis which involves a long-term cough with mucus and emphysema which involves destruction of the lungs over time.  Smoking is the main cause of COPD, and the longer someone continues to smoke, the more likely they are to develop the disease.

“Symptoms for COPD can include cough, fatigue, respiratory infections, shortness of breath and wheezing,” said Dr. Belenchia.  “But because the symptoms of COPD tend to develop slowly, some people may not be aware that they are even sick.”

As part of Archbold’s continuing Health Talk free community lecture series, Dr. Belenchia will present “Asthma and COPD: Symptoms, Risk Factors and the Latest Treatment Options,” on Thursday, July 24, 2014 at 6pm. Details of symptoms and treatment options for asthma and COPD will be discussed.  The talk is being offered free as a clinical outreach effort to uphold Archbold’s core value of community benefit.  Dr. Belenchia is board certified in pulmonology and practices at Archbold Pulmonary Medicine and Critical Care Services.

“Asthma and COPD are serious diseases,” said Dr. Belenchia, “But by working closely with your physician, you can help relieve symptoms and keep the disease from getting worse.”

The lecture will begin at 6pm and be held in Williams Auditorium in the East Tower of Archbold Memorial Hospital.  Dinner will be served.  Pre-registration is required; call 229-584-5520 or visit