The difficulty of breathing and cough are often disregarded. Most people think that these are the only cause of aging or exercises. However, it could be transmittable diseases and already affect the lungs. Infectious lung problems are often spread from person to person. Understanding the lungs diseases that are contagious may help in the early diagnosis.
Further Understanding of Lung Diseases
Lung diseases refer to the problem in your lungs in which it affects the lung function. It is known as the third leading cause of mortality in the United States. The most common lung diseases worldwide are COPD, asthma, pneumonia and lung cancer. Infections cause some diseases. Most of the common symptom is difficulty in breathing. It occurs when the lung that allows us to breathe is affected by some conditions, and block the body from getting adequate oxygen. Other signs that the person has lung problems are a productive cough, wheezing and mucus production. There are three important main types of lung diseases. Viral pathogens are the prevalent cause of respiratory infections especially the travelers.
Parts of the Lungs Affected by Infections
The lung has its different parts and often affected by transmittable diseases. The lungs are divided into different sections and help the normal functions of the lung which is to help the oxygen from the air enter the blood. Once the infections enter into the lungs, it affects the following.
- Airway problems. The diseases affect the airway of the lungs that carry and transport oxygen and gases going in and out of the lungs. Airway disease causes the narrowing and blockage of the airways resulting in insufficient oxygen going into the lungs. COPD, asthma, and bronchitis are the common example of diseases affect the airways.
- Lung circulation diseases. There is the specific disease that affects the blood vessels in the lungs like pulmonary arteries. The disease is caused by clotting and inflammation of the blood vessels. The ability of the lungs to receive and oxygen and release carbon dioxide is affected. Pulmonary hypertension is the best example of this disease.
- Alveoli lung diseases. The air sacs of the lung are affected. The air sacs located at the end of the respiratory tree. Air sacs are responsible for the transport of oxygen and carbon dioxide going to and from the lungs and bloodstream. Pneumonia, emphysema, and tuberculosis are the diseases associated with alveoli.
What Are the Contagious Lung Diseases?
The infectious lung diseases are often caused by a pathogen such as viruses, bacteria, and fungi. The organisms enter the respiratory tract and cause inflammation and resulted in narrowing and blockage of the lungs. Many of the pathogens that cause lung diseases can easily spread from person to person. Some people can easily be infected by direct and indirect contact from infected person’s mucous, saliva and blood. The common contagious lung diseases are the following.
- Pneumonia. This infectious disease is an inflammation of the tissue of one or both lungs. It can be caused by a bacterial infection that resulted in severe symptoms. However, infections caused by a virus can be life-threatening and may cause severe inflammation. Pneumonia is a condition that infects the alveoli and starts to form a fluid and pus.
- Tuberculosis. This condition is a transmittable disease that is caused by a bacteria known as Mycobacterium tuberculosis. It can easily spread through the air when an infected person sneeze and cough, and then you are exposed to the bacteria especially if you have a weak immune system. Symptoms of TB are a cough for more than three weeks, loss of appetite, and coughing of blood.
- Bronchitis. It is an infection of the bronchi or the bronchial tubes, the windpipe of the lungs. The person with bronchitis experience the insufficient air and oxygen to breathe. They are unable to release the heavy phlegm. Bronchitis can be a short-term and long-term disease. The common symptoms are a persistent cough and usually last for a few weeks.
- Influenza. It is also known as the flu that is caused by an influenza virus. It is considered as the highly contagious disease and usually occurs in the seasonal epidemics. This flu can be mild to severe illness when disregard can lead to death. The common sign is fever, and other symptoms are a cough, fatigue, diarrhea, and vomiting. Flu is different from cold because different viruses cause them.
The lung diseases mentioned above are the common contagious disease. Other infectious diseases that affect the respiratory system are coronavirus infections such as SARS and MERS-CoV. There are also pneumococcal disease and pertussis which are infectious respiratory diseases. The thing that you should do is to take care of yourself by being mindful of the symptoms. Make sure to eat a balanced diet and do some exercises which will help your immune system fight the infection.
In conclusion, infectious diseases can be easily transmitted from person to person and can cause mild and severe lung diseases. Some infectious lung diseases may show the same symptoms. Therefore, consulting a physician is necessary to run some test and determine the lung problem. Following a doctor’s advice may help in the treatment and prevent further complications.