Are you struggling to breathe? Or are you dealing with pneumonia, bronchitis, tuberculosis, or asthma-related problems? If that’s the case, then you might need to see a pulmonologist. Unfortunately, some people choose not to seek help from a specialist, especially if they’re currently taking medication. But keep in mind that this is not a good practice.
In this post, you’ll find the top reasons why one might need to see a pulmonologist, so if you’re hesitant to seek medical assistance, read on. First, you need to understand what this medical professional does.
Who Is A Pulmonologist?
A pulmonologist is a specialist who focuses on people’s respiratory health. Our respiratory system has three major parts that help us breathe: the respiratory muscles, the airways, and the lungs.
Several diseases and conditions are affecting the respiratory system of adults and kids. Pulmonologists are trained to diagnose and cure such conditions. Some of the most common diagnoses are cancer, infections, and inflammation.
Furthermore, pulmonologists can treat autoimmune problems and some conditions associated with the heart.
Why Do You Need to See A Pulmonologist?
Coughing Up Blood
When your severe cough is unexpectedly accompanied by hemoptysis or blood, there could be an underlying condition that needs an immediate attention. Coughing up blood can be one of the symptoms of tuberculosis, bronchitis, physical trauma to the lung, or pulmonary embolism.
The blood may come from outside the airway or stomach. Whatever the cause might be, you should consult a specialist immediately. Fortunately, pulmonologists like Nova Pulmonary Critical Care and Sleep Associates can help to determine the cause of the bleeding.
Having a Hard Time Breathing
Respiratory distress, as well as panting sounds when coughing, should not be taken lightly because they could be a sign of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD that involves blockages of the airway. Also, you should have your lungs examined by specialists, especially if you have a tight chest.
If you are currently dealing with asthma or COPD and experiencing bouts of breathing issues, a pulmonologist will examine your lungs and, most importantly, perform a chest X-ray to find out why your body isn’t responding or reacting to the treatment.
Your Severe Cough Does Not Respond to the Treatment Given by Your General Practitioner
If you are experiencing a cough for more than three weeks, keep in mind that it’s already considered chronic. Even though your physician has previously diagnosed you with an underlying medical condition like COPD or asthma, it might be a good reason to consult a reliable pulmonologist, mainly if your first line of medication isn’t working.
If your cough continues after you have had bronchitis or other kinds of respiratory infections, it is crucial to identify the cause of your cough. Luckily, a pulmonologist is capable of ruling out any severe respiratory problems, like lung cancer. Aside from that, this specialist can offer you various treatments or even a combination of treatments if your existing treatment isn’t working.
Fever and Unintentional Weight Loss
Fever and weight loss accompanied by severe cough should not be ignored. This is true if a fever lasts more than a week. Usually, these symptoms could be signs of lung cancer and tuberculosis. In addition to that, it means bacterial infections or, worse, HIV.
Prone to COPD, Tuberculosis, or Other Lung Diseases
Do you have any reason to be concerned about any lung disease? If so, you may want to have a severe cough tested by specialists like a pulmonologist. If you have been exposed to a person with tuberculosis, you may possibly have been infected.
On the other hand, if you’ve been a smoker for a long time, you can also be more prone to lung diseases like COPD, particularly emphysema, which is associated with smoking tobacco.
Also, some occupations like the construction and mining industries pose higher risks for the contraction of COPD since exposure to gases and dust may result in this condition. If you’re experiencing severe coughing and you’re currently working in these industries, a further test to rule out COPD is critical.
If you are experiencing any of the above-mentioned symptoms or signs, it’s highly recommended that you contact a pulmonologist right away. Different health clinics and hospitals have pulmonologists on staff that can treat emergencies. They’re also offering long-term care for chronic or ongoing conditions. But you need to make sure that you choose a reliable medical provider to ensure that you’re in good hands and that your situation does not worsen.