About Lung Disorders in Children
The lungs are body organs. Their function is to take oxygen from the air and circulate it into the blood. Some children are born with lung disease and some develop lung conditions from infections or injuries.
Three of lung disorders in children include:
- Chronic Lung Disease
- Interstitial Lung Disease
- Pediatric Asthma
- Physical exams, blood and other tests help pinpoint the exact cause. Medication or even surgery will be the treatment course children with lung disorders take.
Chronic Lung Disease
Chronic lung disease (CLD) speaks to long term respiratory difficulties in premature babies. Chronic lung disease causes are lung injuries from using a mechanical ventilator and extra oxygen for breathing. The lungs of these babies are fragile and easily damaged.
Chronic lung disease symptoms include rapid breathing, nostril flaring, chest retractions and the continued use of mechanical ventilation or oxygen after a premature baby reaches 36 months.
There are many chronic lung disease treatments. They include extra oxygen, mechanical ventilation, medication, limiting fluids, nutrition and lung infection immunization.
Interstitial Lung Disease
The interstitial space in the body consists of the air sacs of the lung, the walls around them and the spaces within and between the blood vessels and small airways. This chronic lung disease occurs when the cells in the lung tissue accumulate and become inflamed.
Symptoms include shortness of breath and coughing. Eventually, the ability to transfer oxygen to the blood decreases resulting in further breathing difficulties and coughing.
This lung disease diagnosis can be not so apparent at first. That’s because the symptoms resemble so many other lung disorders. Diagnostic testing and sometimes even a biopsy must be done to pinpoint the presence of interstitial lung disease.
Lung disease treatment in the interstitial space consists of medication, home oxygen administration and pulmonary rehabilitation.
Asthma affects more than 20 million people in America and is one of the most common chronic lung diseases of children. It’s caused by the narrowing of the airways.
While coughing may be the only symptom, other signs can include wheezing, shortness of breath and chest tightness. The symptoms vary in frequency and severity.
Diagnosis is made largely by listening to the report of symptoms from the patient. To confirm their suspicions the doctors do pulmonary function tests.
Asthma treatment includes two classes of drugs:
- Anti-inflammatory that suppress the inflammation that narrows the airways
- Bronchodilators help to relax and widen the airways. They include ingredients for quick relief of intense symptoms and long term control.
These asthma treatments can help asthma sufferers to lead a normal life.