Common Causes Of Lungs Hyperinflation

hyperinflation of lungs causesIf you are finding it extremely hard to breathe and suffer from frequent coughs, your lungs might be hyperinflated. Lungs are made up of millions of air sacs called alveoli.

These are miniscule in size but perform a major function. They expel used up carbon dioxide out of the body and take in fresh oxygen. They are made up of elastic fibers. These fibers help alveoli to expand and contract each time a person inhales and exhales.

A deformity or damage to these elastic fibers interferes with the breathing abilities of the person. In most cases, the air inhaled is difficult to expel because of reduced elasticity, forcing the used up gas to remain inside, leading to ballooning up of the lungs, causing hyperinflation.

What Causes Hyperinflation?

1) Emphysema:

This condition leads to decreased lung functioning, reducing the lungs ability to expel out carbon dioxide. The University of Michigan Healthy System classifies emphysema as a chronic lung condition where there is considerable thinning of lungs and extreme expansion, leading to reduced functioning, causing hyperinflation.

2) Sudden Asthma Attack:

This is caused due to obstruction and contraction of bronchioles. This decreases the person’s ability to inhale and exhale. A severe asthma attack will lead to contraction of air sacs, preventing carbon dioxide from being expelled out, causing hyperinflation.

3) Smoking:

Hazardous chemical released from cigarettes irritate the air sacs, causing irreparable damage. These substances are also responsible for triggering the formation of cancerous cells in the respiratory tract. This leads to obstruction due to the presence of newly formed tumors causing hyperinflation.

4) Lung Cancer:

The presence of precancerous or cancerous cells along the respiratory tract leads to obstruction of normal air flow causing numerous gases to get trapped inside. These tumors will also prevent fresh air from being inhaled, obstructing the wind pipe, leading to hyperinflation and extreme difficulty in breathing.

5) Osteoarthritis of Ribs:

This is more common in men. Osteoarthritis causes severe inflammation of the ribs, leading to decreased expansion and contraction. This in turn applies extreme pressure on the lungs, interfering with respiration process, leading to hyperinflation.

6) Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease or COPD:

Those suffering from COPD are major complainers of hyperinflation. Here there is narrowing of bronchial tubes, leading to impaired respiratory functioning.

Symptoms Of Lungs Hyperinflation:

Difficulty in breathing, excess coughing and a distinct sound each time you inhale and exhale are common symptoms of hyperinflation.

How Is Hyperinflation Of Lungs Diagnosed?

Your doctor might ask you to undergo radiography test. The results of the X-Ray obtained can be used to diagnose the condition. However, performing a lung function test is one of the most efficient methods to prove the presence of hyperinflation.

Lung function tests will check the lung elasticity and strength, the amount of air expelled out and the amount of air that is being inhaled. These results will be compared with that of a healthy person. If the levels are significantly lower than that of a normal person, hyperinflation is diagnosed and appropriate treatment is meted out.

Treatment Of Lungs Hyperinflation :

Hyperinflation is treated by looking at the underlying condition that is causing lungs in inflate. Bronchodilators are useful for asthma patients. You can raise the position of your head while sleeping for easy breathing. Lying on your sides rather than sleeping flat on your back is also effective in relieving the condition. Yoga and breathing exercises strengthen the lungs, helping in increased elasticity. Quit smoking for immediate improvement of the condition.

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