Enlarged, four-piece model showing the effects of COPD on the bronchus and alveoli. The bronchus cross-section shows a healthy bronchus and the mucus hypersecretion resulting from COPD. A healthy aveoli is contrasted with an emphysema aveoli with cross-section showing wall destruction and decreased, larger alveolar ducts.
Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema, is a chronic inflammatory lung disease that makes it hard to breathe. COPD damages the airways in the lungs and can worsen over time. More than 11 million Americans suffer from COPD and it is the third leading cause of death nationally.