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Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is an umbrella term for a group of lung conditions that cause long-term damage to the airways. In COPD the airways are narrowed, due to a variety of causes, so the air you breathe cannot flow freely in or out of the lungs.
Obstructive = describes the narrowing of the airways
Pulmonary = of the lungs
Disease = illness
The main symptoms of COPD are:
You may also have other symptoms such as repeated chest infections, weight loss and tiredness (fatigue).
The main cause of COPD is smoking.
Other factors that may cause COPD include: