Emphysema literally takes your breath away and destroys your quality of life. People with emphysema have trouble breathing which eventually makes it difficult to engage in ordinary activities such as going to the grocery store or even walking from one end of the house to the other. Smoking tobacco causes most cases, however some cases may be the result of industrial dust or a genetic deficiency. Emphysema affects people of all races. Yet, African-Americans tend to die earlier of smoking related disease than Caucasians. More men have emphysema than women. Emphysema usually does not affect young people. However, waiting until you are middle-aged, may be too late. Learn what you can do to prevent emphysema. If you or someone you know has emphysema, learn how to better live with this chronic condition.

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Written by: Lillian Trettin, Ph.D.
Reviewed by: Jeffrey G. Schultze, M.D.
Last Modified: Tuesday February 07, 2017 2:56 PM