Many homes harbor dust, fumes, germs, and other irritants that aggravate COPD symptoms.
Smoking poses an enormous threat to the lungs of people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) -- and no wonder. Tobacco smoke contains more than 4,000 chemicals, including 43 that are known to cause cancer. Outdoor air pollution is another significant threat.Read the whole thing for more info.
But those are not the only threats to people with COPD, a lung disease that encompasses both emphysema and chronic bronchitis. Many homes harbor dust, fumes, germs, and other irritants that aggravate COPD symptoms like wheezing, coughing, shortness of breath, and chest tightness. The risks are especially high in the 20% of COPD sufferers who also have allergies.
You might be surprised at some of the things around the house that can cause trouble. For example, some air filters that help rid the air of dust give off small amounts of ozone, an air pollutant that is a lung irritant.
“Ozone can certainly be problematic for people with COPD,” says Byron Thomashow, MD, professor of medicine at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City and chairman of the COPD Foundation. “That’s why I usually recommend HEPA filters,” which don’t give off ozone.
Here are nine other household hazards for people with COPD: [...]
Should Blood Pressure Be Taken in Both Arms?
Differences in Blood Pressure Between Arms May Signal Blood Vessel Problems
Jan. 30, 2012 -- Differences in blood pressure readings taken from the left and right arms may be a sign of heart and blood vessel disease and death risk, according to a new review of recent research.
Researchers found that a difference of 15 points or more in the readings between the left and right arms raised the risk of peripheral vascular disease, a narrowing or blockage of the arteries, by two-and-a-half times.
That same 15 point-difference in systolic readings (the top number in a blood pressure reading) also increased the risk of cerebrovascular disease by 60%. Cerebrovascular disease is associated with thinking problems, such as dementia, and an increased risk of stroke.
Researchers say the results suggest that doctors should routinely compare blood pressure readings from both arms to prevent unnecessary deaths.
Although the practice of taking blood pressure from both arms as a part of heart disease screening has been adopted in Europe, and some guidelines in the U.S. recommend it, American Heart Association spokesman Richard Stein, MD, says it’s not routinely done in the U.S.
“This is very interesting,” says Stein, professor of cardiology at the New York University School of Medicine. “It can translate immediately, as we learn more about it, into better detection of people at higher risk of disease.” [...]
Read the whole thing for more details of the research, and embedded links.