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The Best Medications for COPD

Doctor concerned about COPD's progression in patientChronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) affects many people around the country, and while there is no cure for this disease, there are a variety of drugs available for people who have been diagnosed with COPD. These medications have been designed to help patients maintain more control over their condition, because when left unchecked the symptoms of COPD can be quite debilitating.

An effective drug regimen will treat COPD symptoms and lower your risk of exacerbation , while also allowing you the opportunity to live the life that you want with your family and loved ones. If you are living with this respiratory disease, you may qualify for this COPD clinical trial in Birmingham, AL.

COPD Medications Available

The drugs that are currently prescribed for COPD have been divided into separate groups based on how they must be taken and their mechanism of action. Depending on the case, some of these COPD drugs may need to be taken on a regular basis and others may only need to be taken on certain occasions. Here is a list of drugs used to combat this pulmonary disease:

Inhaled Steroids

Inhaled steroids are prescribed for people with COPD and other respiratory conditions. Medications, like an inhaled corticosteroid, are used to reduce the amount of inflammation in a patient’s airways and thus clear up some of the obstruction, which should make it easier for them to breathe.

This drug should not be taken for an extended period of time, as it can cause some severe side effects in patients. Among the reported adverse effects from taking inhaled steroids are incidences where people developed cataracts, high blood pressure, diabetes, and weaker bones. These drugs are most often prescribed in cases where the patient has been struggling with more severe respiratory symptoms.

Antibiotics

Antibiotics are often prescribed for people who have been dealing with a particularly nasty infection or other illness. In fact, the odds are that you have taken antibiotics at some point during your life, in other words this is a common form of medication.

COPD patients are more likely to develop complicating respiratory infections such as acute bronchitis, pneumonia, and influenza. These  can exacerbate the patient’s symptoms which could leave them hospitalized. So, many doctors will prescribe antibiotics to their patients.  This is also a COPD drug that should only be taken when necessary.

Bronchodilators

Bronchodilators are used to relax the muscles which surround a patient’s airways. Chronic bronchitis can cause these to become inflamed and obstructed, which can leave you feeling like a fish out of water. Bronchodilators will help to relieve some of the worst symptoms (such as the chronic cough and shortness of breath) caused by this obstruction, and they are often prescribed in inhaler form.

This type of COPD drug is available in a short-acting or long-acting form depending on whether the patient is suffering from moderate to severe COPD. The short-acting bronchodilators can be taken before getting some exercise, while the long-lasting version should be taken at the start of the day. In some cases, COPD patients may need to use both forms of this medication.

No two cases of COPD are exactly the same, and this means that patients will get the most benefit from a drug regimen that it uniquely tailored to their current symptoms and physical condition. If you have already undergone testing for COPD, then you should meet with your doctor as soon as possible in order to discuss which COPD drugs and therapies will work best for you.