Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD does not have any cure. But with the help of medicines and cessation of smoking, it can be kept under control. Different types of medicines cure different types of symptoms. Mucus, breathlessness, cough and fatigue are all the symptoms of COPD. Based on the intensity of the particular symptom and the prescription given by your doctor, you can use one or more than five types of medicines available to keep COPD under control.
Bronchodilators help ease breathing. The medicine in a bronchodilator opens up the airways of your lungs and eases breathing. Oxygen therapy is suggested if it is becoming difficult for your body to get enough oxygen into your bloodstream. Oxygen therapy lessens breathlessness and improves physical stamina in patients suffering from COPD.
COPD patients often suffer bacterial inflections that can cause severe flare-ups in the lungs. In such cases, antibiotics are used to kill the bacteria. Different antibiotics such as Cipro, Amoxil, Septra, etc., kill different bacteria. Sometimes, because of extreme flare-ups in the lungs, a COPD patient may experience flu and pneumonia. Here, vaccines are given to decrease the intensity of the symptom.
Some COPD patients experience severe cough and inflammation in the lungs. These patients are prescribed anti-inflammatory drugs. These medicines are usually in the form of corticosteroids. Anti-inflammatory medicines reduce cough and inflammation in the airways of the lungs. Usually, the patient inhales them. Although corticosteroids are primarily given to asthma patients, they can also help those COPD patients suffering from severe cough and inflammation in the lungs.
Based on the symptoms and the individual reactions to the medicines, doctors prescribe various medicines. But all COPD patients should take some precautions while they use these medicines. Taking the medicines as directed, not stopping them without consulting the doctor, not sharing the medicines with other patients, planning for the refills well ahead of time and being well aware of the effects and side effects of a medicine before you start taking them etc., can be extremely beneficial in containing the symptoms of COPD.
Contact your physician if you experience any side effects from these medicines. They can be increased shortness of breath, allergic reactions, prolonged nausea, vomiting, prolonged muscle cramps, or heart palpitations, white spots in the mouth and vaginal itching.