Respiratory Disease in Summer
We’re all aware of how difficult it is to fight respiratory infections throughout the winter months. But did you know that a high temperature has an impact on our lungs and breathing? Sudden temperature changes, excessive humidity levels, or extremely dry environments can affect people with lung problems.
Asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, and COPD are some of the most common respiratory diseases.
How warm and humid air can affect our lungs?
Hot weather can cause airway inflammation, dehydration, and easy fatigue, which have an impact on the respiratory system, including an increased aggravation of COPD (a disease that is common among smokers) due to airway inflammation.
Dehydration will trigger blood in the sputum (Hemoptysis) which will be observed in patients with active pulmonary tuberculosis or old healed kochs.
Because the pollen load in the air will be higher in the early summer, it will cause Eosinophilia, which will be followed by Bronchitis. Severity of Asthma
Increased use of air coolers, air conditioners, and refrigerators during this season makes adults and children more prone to upper respiratory tract infections, as well as Atypical pneumonia-like Legionella.
What are the treatment options?
To diagnose your disease, it’s crucial to go through your signs and symptoms, know about your family medical history, any lung irritants you’ve been exposed to, particularly cigarette smoke. The following tests may be required to diagnose the following tests:
Lung (pulmonary) function tests: The most frequent test, spirometry, involves blowing into a big tube attached to a small machine in order to determine how much air your lungs can retain and how quickly you can blow it out. Measurement of lung volumes and diffusing capacity, a six-minute walk test, and pulse oximetry are among the other tests available.
X-ray of the chest. Emphysema, one of the most common causes of COPD, can be seen on a chest X-ray. Other lung diseases or heart failure can also be ruled out using an X-ray.
CT scan: A CT scan can detect emphysema and assess whether you would benefit from COPD surgery. Lung cancer can also be detected with CT scans.
Analyze the blood gasses in the arteries: This blood test determines how well your lungs transport oxygen and remove carbon dioxide from your blood. Laboratory Tests: Although lab tests aren’t used to diagnose COPD, they can help you figure out what’s causing your symptoms and other alternative possibilities. For example, lab testing may be conducted to see if you have alpha-1-antitrypsin deficiency, a genetic condition that can cause COPD in certain people.
Clean your Air Coolers/Air Conditioner before you use
The improper cleaning of cooling machinery such as air coolers and air conditioners can result in inexplicable fever, cough, and difficulty breathing, leading to pneumonia, which necessitates admission, a chest x-ray, and a CT scan to determine the reason. And treatment will be done according to the organism, such as legionella pneumonia or mycoplasma pneumonia, which are both referred to as “atypical pneumonia” or “walking pneumonia.”
- ‘COPD’ by MayoClinic: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/copd/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20353685
- “Respiratory Diseases During Summer” by Family Practice Center: https://www.familypracticecenter.com/respiratory-diseases-during-summer/
About Author –
Dr. Ugandhar Bhattu. C, Consultant Pulmonologist