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Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease(COPD), is a progressive disease that makes it hard to breathe. "Progressive" means the disease gets worse over time. COPD can cause coughing that produces large amounts of mucus, wheezing, shortness of breath, chest tightness, and other symptoms. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis, as well as asthmatic bronchitis. Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of COPD. Most people who have COPD smoke or used to smoke. Long-term exposure to other lung irritants—such as air pollution, chemical fumes, or dust - also may contribute to COPD.