Respiratory System Disorders

Respiratory Disorders

The respiratory system diseases are the diseases that occur in the lungs or the human airway, which affects human respiration. A disorder is basically the malfunctioning of an organ of the human body. The respiratory system disorders are the medical terms that are used to study the several different types of allergies, infections, and various other diseases that are related to different tissues, organs, and specialized cells of the human respiratory system. 

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The human respiratory system comprises the upper respiratory tract, bronchi, alveoli, trachea, pleura, bronchioles, and pleural cavity. For instance, the common cold is an example of a mild respiratory disorder, while pneumonia, asthma, lung cancer, tuberculosis, and influenza, etc. are examples of some serious and life-threatening respiratory disorders.

Factors Associated with Respiratory Disorders

There can be several internal as well as external factors associated with respiratory system disorders. A few of these factors include:

  1. Allergies

  2. Bacterial and viral infections

  3. Smoking 

  4. Genetics

  5. Air pollution

Types of Respiratory System Diseases

The respiratory system diseases affect millions of people all around the world every year due to the several factors that are associated with respiratory system disorders. There are mainly three types of respiratory diseases as follows: -

  • Lung Tissue Disease: The human lungs are covered with a thin layer of tissue called pleura. The structure of the lung tissues gets affected due to certain viral and bacterial infections, the outcome of which is the scarring and the inflammation of the pleura that aids the lungs to expand normally, and this makes the act of breathing difficult. 

  • Airway Disease: The airway diseases affect the bronchial tubes that are responsible for transporting the oxygen and other important gases in and out of the lungs. In these kinds of diseases, the airway passage gets reduced, either narrowing of the airway passage or the blockage of the bronchial tubes, which results in the difficulty of breathing. 

  • Lung Circulation Disease: These kinds of diseases occur when the blood vessels of the lungs get coagulated, swollen, or damaged. This affects the ability of the lungs to exchange gases in and out of the human body. In the worst cases, these kinds of disorders can affect the functioning of the heart as well.

Causes of Respiratory Diseases

The respiratory disorders can be caused due to the exposure of the pollutants present in the atmosphere, smoking, asbestos, radon, inhaling the tobacco smoke, etc.

Respiratory Diseases

The major kind of respiratory diseases list that occur in humans are as follows:

  • Emphysema: It can be defined as the chronic disease reduction of the respiratory surface that occurs due to the damage of the lung alveolar walls. This disease is generally caused by cigarette smoking. The major symptoms of this disease include cough and shortness of breath. Emphysema can also lead to the loss of the elasticity of the lungs. The major factors that cause emphysema are given below:

  1. Air pollution

  2. Smoking tobacco

  3. Dust

  4. Exposure to passive cigarette smoking

  5. Chemicals

  • Asthma: It is a chronic disease that affects the bronchi and the bronchioles present in the lungs. Asthma can cause difficulty in breathing, cough, restlessness, severe cold, and a wheezing sound while breathing. The major factors responsible for causing asthma include respiratory infections, air pollutants, cold air, physical activity, airborne allergens, etc.

  • Lung Cancer: This type of cancer generally occurs in the main part of the lungs, and it can develop in any part of the lungs. The treatment for lung cancer depends on the type, location, and spread of cancer in the lungs and other parts.

  • Occupational Respiratory Disorders: These kinds of respiratory disorders are the ones that occur due to the long-term inhalation of the chemicals proteins and dust, and this affects the respiratory system badly. For example, the inhalation of the asbestos dust causes asbestosis. The other occupational respiratory disorders can happen due to the inhalation of the substances given below:

    1. Sprays of paints, varnish, acids, and pesticides

    2. Gases from industries like ammonia, nitrogen oxides, and chlorine

    3. Smoke from burning organic materials

    4. Dust from silica, pesticides, cotton, coal, and drug powders

    5. Fumes from metals

  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD): These types of diseases include all the respiratory diseases that cause the inability to exhale and breathlessness. It is usually caused by people who are exposed to some sort of smoke. This is a very serious type of disorder and generally gets worse even if you stop smoking.

  • Sinusitis: This causes the inflammation of the mucous membranes in the nasal sinus, and the mucous membranes produce mucus that usually drains into the nasal cavity. The major causes of the inflammation of the mucous membranes are viral or bacterial infections and some other airborne allergens.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

Q1. What Does Respiration Mean? What is a Respiratory Disease?

Answer: The respiration refers to the exchange of gases between blood, air, environment, and tissue cells. It is an essential bodily function for living organisms as it facilitates the inhalation of oxygen and excretion of the carbon dioxide. Any type of problem with the respiratory system can cause huge discomfort to the individual. Respiratory disease is the one that occurs in the lungs or the human airway and affects human respiration, which causes difficulty in breathing. Respiratory disease can be caused due to a variety of natural as well as man-made factors. 

Q2. What are the Causes of Respiratory Disease? In the Respiratory System, How is the Carbon Dioxide Transferred into the Plasma?     

Answer: The primary causes behind respiratory diseases can be classified into natural causes and man-made causes, with the latter being the major causes. The respiratory diseases can be caused due to the exposure of the pollutants present in the atmosphere, smoking, asbestos, radon, inhaling the tobacco smoke, etc. The carbon dioxide in the respiratory system gets transferred into the plasma as bicarbonate ions.