Christy Turlington’s Battle with Emphysema

Many people have never heard of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). But it’s a lung condition that includes emphysema  and chronic bronchitis, and is the fourth leading cause of death in the US. People who have it can end up with inflamed or damaged airways that make it difficult to breathe. In most cases, COPD is caused by smoking. It is not a glamorous disease. The most recognizable symptom of COPD is a chronic, hacking cough. And yet, over the years, celebrities who have suffered from COPD—most of whom developed emphysema from smoking—have, through their fame, brought greater awareness to this serious and life-threatening disease. christy emphysema ad 205x300 Christy Turlingtons Battle with Emphysema

In the vast majority of people, smoking is the cause of emphysema. Exactly how smoking destroys the air sac linings in the lungs isn’t known. However, population studies show that smokers are about six times more likely to develop emphysema than nonsmokers. Estimates vary, but more than 10 million people in the U.S. likely have emphysema or another form of COPD. Emphysema and chronic bronchitis are the fourth leading cause of death in the U.S.

Read more Facts about Emphysema

In 1997, after her father died of lung cancer, supermodel Christy Turlington lent her million-dollar looks to a series of antismoking public service announcements. Turlington herself had quit smoking in 1994, after maintaining a pack-a-day habit for nearly a decade. She didn’t quit soon enough. Three years later, at the age of 31, the cover girl revealed that she had early-stage emphysema. Turlington’s story is a vivid reminder that COPD can start to develop in one’s 20s, and even earlier, although most people aren’t diagnosed until their 40s, 50s, or 60s.  In a cruel twist, this makes Turlington a particularly apposite spokesperson for the disease. “When I started modelling I wanted to appear more grown up, and smoking easily did that for me,” the model said last week. “By 16 I was on a pack a day. The frightening thing is, my smoking caused permanent damage. It seems so ironic – breathing is part of the process that sustains life; you breathe in cigarettes and they take your breath away.”

What is emphysema?

Emphysema is a progressive lung disease that results in shortness of breath and reduces your capacity for physical activity. The cause of emphysema is damage to the small air sacs and small airways in your lungs. This damage obstructs airflow when you exhale. When emphysema is advanced, you must work so hard to expel air from your lungs that just the simple act of breathing can consume a great deal of energy. Unfortunately, because emphysema develops gradually over many years, you may not experience symptoms such as shortness of breath until irreversible damage has already occurred.

1. The main cause of emphysema is smoking, which activates inflammatory cells in the lung. This inflammation causes; 1) swelling within the bronchioles, and 2) activation of enzymes called proteases which attack and destroy lung tissue (the alveolar wall structures).

2. There is a genetic predisposition to emphysema. The relatively rare condition known as alpha 1-antitrypsin deficiency is the genetic deficiency of a chemical that protects the lung from damage by proteases.

3. Emphysema is also a component of aging. As the lungs get older, the elastic properties decrease, and the tensions that develop can result in small areas of emphysema.

4. In underdeveloped countries, a common cause of emphysema is indoor air pollution. In these populations, it is very common to have indoor stoves in the kitchen. The smoke from cooking results in the damage to the lungs.

Smoking causes 82% of emphysema/chronic bronchitis among males and 76% among females.  A more recent report by the U.S. Surgeon General attributes smoking as the cause of more than 90% of deaths due to COPD. Damage from emphysema is not reversible. However, quitting smoking will slow the rate of loss of lung capacity in chronic airways disease.

Improve Your And Your Family’s Health By Switching To An Alternative Smoking Experience

There is an alternative to treatments for lung cancer, chronic bronchitis, and emphysema that does not involve a surgical procedure, using a bronchodilator, or suffering from unbearable withdrawal symptoms. Traditional cigarette smokers can improve their health and the health of their family by switching from traditional cigarettes, which contain 4,000 chemicals and carcinogens, to an electronic cigarette, also known as e-cigarettes, which contain only four ingredients: water, propylene glycol, nicotine, and a fragrance that emulates the cigarette flavor.

Smoking regular cigarettes not only increases an individual’s chances of lung damage but also enhances the possibility of damage caused by second hand smoke to their exposed loved ones. E-cigarettes are a viable smoking option that does not cause lung damage. Because an electronic cigarette is truly smokeless, it eliminates the harmful smoke inhaled by those who come into contact with them and also removes the fire hazards associated with a lit flame. It is now possible to experience the smoking sensation of regular cigarettes without the risks. E-cigarettes, also known as an electronic cigarette, can shield you and your family from the health risks associated with the lung damage caused by smoking traditional cigarettes.

Solar Cigarette has offered a great opportunity for smokers to choose the type of starter kit they wish to purchase. Because of the special launch, the Solar Cigarette Starter Kit comes in 3 types of packages. This means in any 1 of the three you have an opportunity to save more money and reduce the heavy investment it takes to quit smoking.  All the Solar Cigarette kits comes with a 1 trial cartridge that the smoker can use to try out the electric cigarette. The free trial kit has a separate pack of 5 cartridges in a bleeder pack for which the smoker can keep using. After the initial investment of an e-cigarette start-up kit, the replacement cartridges will typically run about half the cost of real cigarettes. And because you can decrease the concentration of nicotine delivered in increments, it may be a way of weaning oneself from the drug. In the USA, as of Nov. 2009, use of e-cigarettes is unrestricted. In fact, they are becoming more popular and accepted every day.

Smoking is the most important risk factor for emphysema. When a person inhales tobacco smoke, it damages the air sacs in the lungs. Eventually, the lungs loose their functioning resulting in emphysema. People who smoke 20 or more cigarettes per day suffer from emphysema. Current smokers are 6 times more likely to develop emphysema than non-smokers. Smoking causes 82% of emphysema among males and 76% among females. Damage from emphysema is irreversible. So it can not be cured. Nevertheless giving up smoking is quite beneficial. It helps to slow down the rate of loss of lung capacity in emphysema.

Damaged lung tissue cannot be regrown. Whatever damage is done is done – forever!

Save your lungs and choose a healthier alternative to tobacco smoking with Solar Cigarette!

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