Corporate Office- South Bend, IN

17187 State Road 23 South Bend, IN 46635 Phone: (574) 273-6000 Fax: (574) 247-8199 View Map & Get Directions

Elkhart, IN

1612 W. Lexington Ave. Elkhart, IN 46514 Phone: (574) 522-2273 Fax: (574) 522-4563 View Map & Get Directions

Plymouth, IN

1920 W. Lake Ave. Plymouth, IN 46563 Phone: (574) 941-4444 Fax: (574) 941-4440 View Map & Get Directions

Michigan City, IN

3219 South Franklin Street Michigan City, IN 46360 Phone: (219) 872-1000 Fax: (219) 879-1917 View Map & Get Directions

St. Joseph's Regional Medical Center, Medical Office Building

611 E. Douglas Road, Suite 124 Mishawaka, IN 46545 Phone: 574-247-8100 Fax: 574-855-2475 View Map & Get Directions

Health Issues

COPD Symptoms and Facts

In general, symptoms of COPD don't appear until significant lung damage has occurred, and they usually worsen over time. People with COPD are also likely to experience episodes called exacerbations, during which their symptoms suddenly get much worse. Beyond this, signs and symptoms of COPD can vary, depending on which lung disease is most prominent. It's also possible to have many of these symptoms at the same time.

Emphysema
Signs and symptoms of emphysema include:

  • Shortness of breath, especially during physical activities
  • Wheezing
  • Chest tightness

Chronic bronchitis
Chronic bronchitis occurs mainly in smokers. It's defined as a cough that you have at least three months a year for two consecutive years. People who continue to smoke may go on to develop emphysema, but in smokers who are able to quit, the cough may clear in a few days or weeks.

Signs and symptoms of chronic bronchitis include:

  • Having to clear your throat first thing in the morning, especially if you smoke
  • A chronic cough that produces yellowish sputum
  • Shortness of breath in the later stages
  • Frequent respiratory infections

Chronic asthmatic bronchitis
Chronic asthmatic bronchitis is usually chronic bronchitis combined with asthma (bronchospasm). Asthma can occur when inflamed and infected secretions irritate the smooth muscles in your airways. Symptoms are similar to those of chronic bronchitis, but you're also likely to have intermittent — or even daily — episodes of wheezing.