Lungs, Breathing and Respiration

Asthma, COPD and Your Lungs

Asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) are both lung diseases that affect a person’s ability to breath. While it is hard to tell the difference between asthma and COPD just by observing the symptoms, they do affect your lungs differently.

Learn the differences between asthma and COPD

Personal Story Network: Living with Lung Disease

People who live with chronic lung diseases such as asthma, pulmonary fibrosis, and cystic fibrosis are keenly aware that the disease can literally take your breath away. Read how patients, caregivers, and healthcare providers manage the everyday challenges of living with lung disease.

Read their stories on the Patient Story Network

Is It Time To Get That Persistent Cough Evaluated?

  • Coughing up clear, yellow, light brown, or green mucus

  • Flu-like symptoms (fatigue, fever, sore throat, headache, aches, and pains)

  • Hoarse voice

  • Nausea

  • Red, inflamed throat

  • Runny nose (nasal congestion)

  • Sore throat

  • Swollen neck lymph nodes

  • Vomiting

  • Wheezing

  • Diarrhea

  • Fatigue

  • Joint pain

  • Loss of appetite

  • Rash

  • Unintentional weight loss

  • Coughing up blood or blood-tinged mucus or spit

  • Coughing up pink, frothy mucus

  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath

  • Difficulty speaking

  • Frequent urination

  • High fever (higher than 101 degrees Fahrenheit)

  • Leg or ankle swelling

  • Painful cough or pain while breathing deeply

  • Rapid heartbeat

  • Severe pain upon swallowing

  • Unexplained weight loss or gain

Know When A Persistent Cough Requires Immediate Evaluation

Prepare for Your Appointment

Doctor visits on average last 13 minutes. Make the most of your time with your doctor with pre-visit planning. Your doctor will appreciate the active role you are taking in your health. Follow the ABCs of doctor visits: Arrive early. Be prepared. Communicate. Search HealthGrades for Top Rated Local Pulmonologists ›

Decision Guides for Breathing and Respiration Symptoms

When your child coughs, he is pushing air out of his lungs to clear his breathing tubes, which can be blocked for all sorts of reasons. Infections (from the mild a minor cold to the more serious pneumonia), asthma, and allergies are among the more common causes, but cough can be caused by other conditions as well. Answering the following questions in this health decision guide will help you understand more about what usually causes children to cough, and help you know when you should contact your doctor for medical care. Begin Evaluating Your Child or Infant's Cough ›

Your Guide to Lungs, Breathing and Respiration


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Personal Story Network

A place where patients, healthcare providers, caregivers, and innovators share their personal stories about healing, and hope within the healthcare system and beyond.