emphysema

(redirected from emphysematous)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical.

emphysema

(ĕmfĭsē`mə), pathological or physiological enlargement or overdistention of the air sacs of the lungs. A major cause of pulmonary insufficiency in chronic cigarette smokers, emphysema is a progressive disease that commonly occurs in conjunction with chronic bronchitis. It is found predominantly in people over age 45, but a genetically based early-onset form also exists. Symptoms are difficulty in breathing, cough with thick sticky sputum, and a bluish tinge of the skin. Progressive disease can result in disability, and in severe cases heart or respiratory failure and death.

Causes

Cigarette smoking is the cause of most cases of emphysema. Tobacco smoke damages the lungs' alveoli, the tiny air sacs through which inhaled oxygen is transferred to the bloodstream and carbon dioxide is passed back to the lungs to be exhaled. The lungs become less elastic and breathing becomes increasingly difficult. The genetic form of emphysema occurs earlier in life (worsened by, but not dependent upon cigarette smoking). It is caused by a rare genetic deficiency of the protein alpha1-antitrypsin. In the absence of antitrypsin, which normally functions to protect the lungs from damage, the walls of the alveoli are attacked by chemicals released in alveoli in response to tobacco smoke and air pollutants.

Treatment

Emphysematous lung damage is irreversible. Its progression can be slowed by giving up smoking. Treatment is aimed at increasing the functional capacity of the lungs and may include bronchodilators, administration of supplemental oxygen, or lung transplantation. Surgical removal of affected lung tissue (lung volume reduction surgery), aimed at allowing healthy areas of the lung room to function, is being studied for its effectiveness and safety. The genetic form is treated with supplemental antitrypsin administered by infusion or by a gene therapy technique that uses T cells (special immune cells that identify diseased or deformed cells) to deliver it to the desired cell sites.

emphysema

[‚em·fə′sē·mə]
(medicine)
A pulmonary disorder characterized by overdistention and destruction of the air spaces in the lungs.

emphysema

Pathol
1. a condition in which the air sacs of the lungs are grossly enlarged, causing breathlessness and wheezing
2. the abnormal presence of air in a tissue or part
References in periodicals archive ?
Emphysematous pyelonephritis is caused by gas producing bacteria or fungi and often requires urgent medical or surgical intervention.
Emphysematous cystitis: illustrative case report and review of the literature.
Emphysematous pyelonephritis-a rare surgical emergency presenting to the physician: a case report and literature review.
Recently, Sze and colleagues (34) have found not only that analysis of the microbiome can be used to discriminate between control and severe COPD lung tissue, but they also demonstrated that a decline in microbial diversity correlated with emphysematous lung destruction, airway remodeling, and CD4 T-cell lymphocyte accumulation within the lung.
The gross and microscopic findings observed in this case led to a diagnosis of emphysematous abomasitis due to bacteria of the Sarcina genus.
Emphysematous cystitis: report of an atypical case.
Veeraiyan, "Spontaneous emphysematous osteomyelitis of spine detected by computed tomography: report of two cases, " Journal of Craniovertebral Junction and Spine, vol.
2 Repeat CT scan images showing interval resolution of emphysematous cystitis after two weeks of antibiotics and foley catheter drainage.
Airway bypass improves the mechanical properties of explanted emphysematous lungs.
Aerosol steroids are given to emphysematous patients with asthma or bronchitis.
Microscopic examination of lung samples revealed generalized hyperemia, with hemorrhagic and emphysematous foci.
The site of emphysematous lesions again varied not fixed at hind quarter but generalized multilocational emphysematous lesions were recorded in both cattle and buffaloes (Fig 1-3).