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 - Northwestern Memorial Hospital - Chicago


Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is term that includes a number of diseases that are characterized by lung dysfunction caused when the airflow to and from areas within the lung is blocked or obstructed. Most people have heard of emphysema and chronic bronchitis, and those two lung diseases are both forms of COPD.

COPD is the fourth leading cause of death in the United States, and experts predict that it will become the third leading cause by the year 2020. Most cases of COPD are caused, either directly or indirectly, by smoking. Smokers have a 10 to 15 percent greater chance of developing COPD than non-smokers, and people who are exposed to second hand smoke also have an increased risk. Quitting smoking, or never starting in the first place, is the best way to avoid developing COPD.

Most people do not seek treatment until their disease has progressed to a later stage that is difficult to treat. We’d like to change that.

Our Care

Our experts are dedicated to detecting COPD early, while it’s more treatable, and we’re constantly researching to improve and perfect treatment options and, ultimately, find a cure.

Our multidisciplinary team includes pulmonologists, thoracic surgeons and radiologists. Which type of physician(s) you see will depend on the severity of your COPD and what the best treatment options are for you. You can trust that our physicians will work together to make sure that you get the best care possible.

Asthma & COPD Program

Our Asthma and COPD Program is dedicated to serving people with asthma and COPD. Led by Ravi Kalhan, MD, MS, we offer multidisciplinary care, comprehensive testing and patient education in one convenient location.

Contact Us

If you have or think you may have COPD, we urge you to seek treatment as soon as possible. If you don’t have a physician, and you’d like to make an appointment with someone who understands COPD and how to successfully manage it, you may do so by calling our Physician Referral Department at 1-877-926-4664. You may also request a first time appointment online.

Last UpdateApril 26, 2013