The symptoms of COPD can appear years after the flow of air into and out of the lungs declines.
Not everyone who has these symptoms has COPD, and not everyone who has COPD has these symptoms. But over time, the symptoms can get in the way of simple tasks. They may make everyday activities like cooking, climbing stairs, or carrying a suitcase seem like a challenge.
SYMPTOMS OF COPD CAN BEGIN TO SHOW
AS EARLY AS AGE 40.
If you experience most of the following symptoms on a regular basis, you may have COPD and should talk to your doctor:
CONSTANT COUGHING or a cough that produces a large amount of mucus—also called smoker's cough
SHORTNESS OF BREATH
especially while doing activities
EXCESSIVE MUCUS production
CHEST TIGHTNESS—feeling of not being able to breathe easily or deeply
WHEEZING—a high-pitched whistling sound made while breathing
TO FIND OUT IF YOU ARE AT RISK FOR COPD.
If you think you may have COPD, print out your results to take to your next doctor’s appointment.