Emphysema is a lung condition with symptoms such as shortness of breath caused due to damage to the air sacs in the lungs. The inner walls of the damaged air sacs weaken over time and rupture, joining with other air sacs to create larger air spaces. So, when people with the condition exhale, the damaged air sacs do not release the old air to make room for fresh oxygen.
People with emphysema often have chronic bronchitis that causes persistent cough due to inflammation in the tubes that carry oxygen to the lungs. When emphysema and chronic bronchitis occur together, the condition is called chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). COPD is a major cause of death in India.
On the other hand, lung cancer occurs when foreign particles alter normal cells causing mutations in genes making them behave abnormally. The abnormal behaviour mostly comprises uncontrollable growth and spread of abnormal cells along with improper functioning of various metabolic activities. A (2021) study published in the Journal of Thoracic Oncology states that ‘Lung cancer is the most often diagnosed cancer and leading cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide. In India, lung cancer accounts for 5.9% of all cancers and 8.1% of all cancer-related deaths’.
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