In the last decades the attention on respiratory disease and conditions has increased because of air pollution and bad habits such as smoking.
Many studies have confirmed that air pollutants are more than just a mere ‘risk factor’ but something extremely serious especially for the infants and the elderly, as they may lead to develop some conditions such as Asthma, Chronic Bronchitis and Emphysema which are included in the group of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) which lists pathologies in which for some reasons the volume and the free flow of gases through the respiratory system are impeded.
The term Asthma comes from the Greek meaning ‘to pant, to exhale with the open mouth’ which is a typical sign in asthmatic patients.
As a matter of fact, the inside walls of asthmatic’s airways are swollen or inflamed, making the airways extremely sensitive to irritations. Moreover, airways become narrower and less air an pass through them, both to and from the lungs. Familiarity seems to play an important role in the pathogenesis of this condition, which often starts in infancy.
On the other hand, Emphysema (from the Greek swelling, inflation) is a lung condition in which the tiny air sacs of the lungs- alveoli -fill up with air which continues to build up , expanding the tiny walls of the alveoli which eventually get damaged, brake and form scar tissue. The patient becomes progressively short of breath (dispnea). Long term regular smoking is the leading cause together with factory fumes, coal and silica dust.
Emphysema often develops from Chronic Bronchitis, which is characterized by the presence of productive cough which lasts for more than 3 months per year for at least 2 years. Even in this case smokers are the typical sufferers, together with workers who are exposed to sulfur dioxide and nitrogen dioxide.
Despite the fact that emphysema and asthma have no cure, nebulised solutions containing Hyaluronic Acid are helpful in the treatment of the main symptoms and-acting as an adjuvant therapy – they may reduce the need for bronchodilatators; together with other more specific medications for each of the condition considered, this treatment is effective against both upper and lower airways narrowing, enhancing ventilation and air flow to and from the lungs. On the other hand, the efficacy of N-Acetylcysteine as a mucolytic is widely known and medicaments containing this active compound can cure symptoms in patients suffering from both acute and chronic bronchitis.
Upper respiratory airways are nowadays increasingly suffering from chronic conditions, too. Among them Rhinitis is probably the most common. Stuffy or runny nose and post-nasal drip are the typical symptoms. The most common kind of rhinitis is the allergic one, which is usually triggered by airborne allergens such as pollen and dander. These patients may present additional symptoms such as sneezing, nasal itching, coughing and headache together with watery, reddened and itchy eyes.
Rhinitis is another condition in which the use of nebulised Hyaluronic Acid is helpful, together with other medicaments such as antiistaminics and corticosteroid in the allergic type. Diclofenac, a cyclooxygenase inhibitor, which belongs to the cathegory of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), is widely prescribed as an anti-inflammatory drug for the mouth and the throat.
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