UNDERSTANDING THE CONDITION: COPD

WHAT IS COPD?

COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) is a serious lung condition that makes it hard to breathe because the airways in your lungs become narrow and partially blocked. COPD includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema.

Common COPD symptoms include:

Shortness of breath

 

Constant cough

 

Excess mucus production

 

Wheezing

 

Chest tightness

COPD symptoms can get worse over time.

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COPD Levels of Severity

COPD is a progressive disease that can get worse over time. Disease severity is based on a number of factors that your doctor will assess, including symptoms and lung function. Your doctor will use a test called spirometry (which involves exhaling, or breathing out, into a tube connected to a device called a spirometer) to measure how well your lungs are working.

Do symptoms matter?

Yes they do. However, symptoms alone may not determine the severity of your COPD. Chronic cough and excess mucus production may occur before the development of airflow limitation. It’s also possible to have significant airflow limitation without experiencing these symptoms–spirometry can help identify COPD before symptoms develop.

How symptoms affect you

What is important is taking note of how COPD symptoms affect your daily life. Symptoms such as chronic dyspnea, cough, and mucus production can vary from day to day. Whether you are experiencing a symptom for the first time, or notice symptoms occurring more often or getting worse, talk to your doctor.

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HOW IS COPD TREATED?

There is no cure for COPD, but there are things you can do to help manage your symptoms. Different medications are available to treat COPD.

Two important types of COPD medication that can help you breathe more easily are rescue inhalers and maintenance inhalers.

Other treatment options may include:

  • Pulmonary rehabilitation programs that can help patients with exercise, nutrition and other strategies
  • Oxygen therapy (breathing in oxygen through a nose tube or face mask) in cases of severe COPD and low levels of oxygen in your blood

Rescue vs maintenance inhaler: What’s the difference?

Rescue inhalers relieve symptoms quickly. Since COPD does not go away, your doctor may also prescribe a maintenance inhaler, which is used daily to help keep your airways open. Even if you take a maintenance inhaler, you will still need to use your rescue inhaler as needed.

It’s important to understand how these different types of medication work to help COPD.

 

WHEN TO USE

RESCUE INHALERS

Use as needed when you feel it’s very difficult to breathe

MAINTENANCE INHALERS

Take every day, even if you’re breathing better

WHAT THEY DO

RESCUE INHALERS

Quickly relieve COPD symptoms by relaxing muscles that tighten the airways

MAINTENANCE INHALERS

Help keep airways open over a longer period of time

May reduce use of rescue inhalers, but don’t replace them

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IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION

Who should not use TUDORZA PRESSAIR?

Do not use TUDORZA PRESSAIR if you have a severe allergy to milk proteins, or are allergic to aclidinium bromide, or any of the ingredients in TUDORZA PRESSAIR. Ask your healthcare provider if you are not sure.

What should I tell my doctor before using TUDORZA?

Before you use TUDORZA, tell your doctor about all your medical conditions, including if you have eye problems (especially glaucoma), prostate or bladder problems, or problems passing urine. TUDORZA may make these problems worse.

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines and eyedrops. Especially tell your doctor if you take anticholinergics (including tiotropium, ipratropium) or atropine.

Do not use TUDORZA more often than prescribed or take more medicine than prescribed for you.

Seek immediate medical help if your breathing problems worsen with TUDORZA, you need to use your rescue inhaler more often than usual, or your rescue inhaler does not work as well for you.

What are the possible side effects of TUDORZA?

TUDORZA can cause serious side effects. Stop taking TUDORZA and seek medical help right away if you experience:

  • Sudden shortness of breath immediately after use of TUDORZA
  • New or worsened symptoms of increased pressure in your eyes (acute narrow-angle glaucoma), which may include eye pain, nausea or vomiting, blurred vision, seeing halos or bright colors around lights, or red eyes. Using only eyedrops to treat these symptoms may not work and if not treated, this could lead to permanent loss of vision
  • Symptoms of new or worsened urinary retention (difficult, painful, or frequent urination, or urination in a weak stream or drips)
  • Serious allergic reactions including rash, hives, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat; breathing problems; and itching

What are the most common side effects of TUDORZA?

The most common side effects of TUDORZA include headache, common cold symptoms, and cough. These are not all the possible side effects with TUDORZA.

INDICATIONS AND USAGE

TUDORZA PRESSAIR is a prescription medicine used long term, 2 times each day to treat symptoms of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), including chronic bronchitis and emphysema.

TUDORZA is not a rescue medicine and should not be used for treating sudden breathing problems. Your doctor may give you other medicine to use for sudden breathing problems.