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Health disparities are differences in the burden of disease or opportunities to achieve one's best health. At our Center, we have focused on such disparities as they relate to lung-health and lung-disease risk factors. Our goal is to both utilize research to better understand these disparities and work with our community engagement arm to help tackle these health gaps.
Asthma is a situation in which the airways of the lung narrow due to swelling with or without excess mucous secretions.
Some symptoms of asthma include coughing, shortness of breath, audible wheezing, and chest tightness.
While there is no cure for asthma, persons living with asthma can control their disease with medications as well as avoiding known triggers when possible.
Triggers are activities or substances that cause asthma symptoms in an individual and may include environmental or even exercise.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a chronic lung disease that causes obstruction of the lungs airways, resulting in the inability to properly clear out air.
The two most common conditions that result in COPD include emphysema and chronic bronchitis.
Emphysema is a disease where the smallest airways of the lung are damaged.
Chronic bronchitis is due to inflammation around the airways resulting in excess mucous.
Symptoms of COPD include shortness of breath, coughing, mucous production, and chest heaviness.
While COPD cannot be cured, it can be well managed with medications and avoidance of substances that are known to worsen the disease, such as cigarette smoke.
Air pollution occurs when there are harmful or excessive amounts of substances are present in air. These substances include gases, dust and particulate matter as well as other biological particles.
Air pollutants are airborne materials that can harm respiratory and cardiovascular health. These include small particles, such as dust, or chemicals, such as carbon monoxide (CO). Reducing exposure to air pollutants may reduce symptoms of pulmonary disease such as asthma or COPD.