Patient Education

Chest ailments: most do not require hospitalization (Dr. S. K. Jindal)

  1. Lung ailments account for over 50% of visitsto doctors in India. Cough and phlegm from different causes constitute the most important symptoms for their visits.
  2. Respiratory infections inclusion tuberculosis (TB), asthma and other chronic lung disease are most common causes of respiratory disability.
  3. Most of the lung diseases can be adequately treated and/or controlled once the diagnosis is made and appropriate treatment started in time.
  4. Cough and sputum: The most common causesinclude Upper Respiratory Catarrh, Asthma, Lung Infection such as Tuberculosis and Interstitial Lung Diseases. Cough may be dry or productive with sputum expectoration. Sputum may sometimes be accompanied with blood i.e. hemoptysis.
  5. Breathlessness: It is an important symptom of various lung diseases but can occur due to heart ailments or other systemic illnesses including the presence of severe anaemia.
  6. Wheezing: Wheezing is the presence of whistling sounds due to the bronchial narrowing (i.e bronchospasm). The most common cause of wheezing is asthma. Wheezing can also occur in some other lung diseases such as Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (COPD), Bronchiectasis, and Bronchial Obstruction due to as tumour (etc).
  7. Most of the lung diseases can be treated on outpatient day-care basis. Hospitalization is required for acute care or for purposes of specialized investigations and/ or treatments. Some of the important indications for hospitalization include the following:
    1. Acute severe attack of asthma
    2. Acute exaggeration of COPD
    3. Severe pneumonia
    4. Intensive care such as Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome or other causes of Acute Respiratory failure.
    5. Specialized diagnostic or treatment interventions.

Dr. S. K. Jindal

(Ex-Professor & Head, Deptt of Pulmonary Medicine,

Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education & Research, Chandigarh)

Medical Director, Jindal Clinics

SCO 21, Sector 20 D, Chandigarh, India 160020

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