COPD, a disease

COPD, a disease that can start before birth

In eight out of ten cases, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), chronic respiratory disease, characterized by a permanent obstruction and progressive airway is tobacco-related

So far, this is not only a disease of old smoker.

The alteration of the respiratory function can, in fact, start very early in life, as reminded by the lung specialists at the annual Congress of pneumology French language which took place in Marseille at the end of the month of January.

As early as 1991, a study published in the British Medical Journal had highlighted a link between low birth weight and the deterioration of lung capacity in adults. Today, it is well demonstrated that the risk of developing COPD is most important when the forced expiratory volume in one second, also called the BASELINE, is lower among the young adult. As explained by professor Christophe Delacourt, pneumo-pediatrician at the Necker hospital in Paris , “if you reach the age of 20 years with an airway of smaller caliber, you have more risk to develop COPD. ” This could in particular explain the non-negligible percentage of smokers who develop COPD early or patients with the disease without having been heavy smokers.

“We need to redouble our prevention messages on tobacco among pregnant women, but also among young people known to have suffered early loss of their capital respiratory” Professor Delacourt What are the factors that will act on the lung growth? “The main involved very early in the development as it is of maternal smoking during the first months of pregnancy and prematurity,” explains professor Christophe Delacourt. In the case of premature delivery, the occurrence of bronchopulmonary dysplasia, respiratory complications severe, may result in permanent loss of FEV is approximately 20 %! The pollution to which is subject the pregnant woman or her vitamin D levels would also have an impact on fetal growth, but less important than tobacco. After birth, early exposure to certain viruses or disease and asthma are also associated with poorer growth of the airway.

The risk factor is the most obvious and the easiest to eliminate, however, the tobacco. The message from experts is clear: “We need to redouble our prevention messages on tobacco among pregnant women, but also among young people known to have suffered early loss of their capital respiratory. They should not start smoking in adolescence,” insisted the professor Delacourt.

In the latter, the tobacco will, in fact, assets in adverse effects on the lungs a lot more quickly in people who have a better capital breathing at birth.

A study conducted by the team of professor Delacourt in mice has clearly shown that, for a smoking the equivalent of adolescence, the decline in lung function was much more intense in animals whose mother had been subject to smoke tobacco during pregnancy and whose lung capacity was already impaired. .

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