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Emphysema

I posted a question earlier but I want to show what the xray  findings were. Lungs look  well expanded and clear with no pneumonia or edema noted. The heart size is within normal limits. No pleural fluid or pneumothorax is seen. No lung mass or cavity or nodularity is seen. No atelectasis or scarring is noted. Bony structures are unremarkable. No mediastinal widening is seen. Cause of symptoms is uncertain.
Impression: Normal chest. No acute lung disease is appreciated.
After this, the Dr. told me that I had acute bronchitis. Since I was a smoker, I asked the Dr. What about emphysema, in which he stated "yes you have it". This is the part that I don't understand. Is the Dr. saying this because of the fact that I was a smoker??? What does he base this answer on??? I'm going to have a Pulmonary Test done anyway but, would like to hear what you expertise have to say about this. Correct me if I am wrong. I've been told that since copd is has become one of the leading diseases in the world, some Dr. are assuming that since a person is smoking many years they will likely get it or develop it??? Your time and cooperation is greatly appreciated.
Sincerely,
Orlando
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242587 tn?1355424110
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
First off, it is very good news that your chest X-ray is normal.  And it is not uncommon to have acute bronchitis, yet still have a normal X-ray.  Also, a “normal” X-ray does not rule out the diagnosis of emphysema but makes it less likely.  I suspect your doctor may believe that anyone who smokes is bound to have emphysema and that is largely true if he based the remark on the likelihood that all or most smokers will have microscopic emphysema.

But that does not mean that you have clinically significant emphysema, with lung destruction, of a degree to alter your breathing.

You are wise to proceed with pulmonary function testing as that is the “gold standard” for establishing the diagnosis of emphysema/COPD.

Regardless of the results of PFT’s I sincerely hope that you will make every effort to stop smoking and never smoke again.  In that case the doctor’s statement on emphysema will have served as a valuable wake-up call.

Good luck
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Avatar universal
The PFT's results are as follow: Pulmonary function were within normal limits. Test results showed mild abnormalities that do not required action at this time.  Is this a good result??? Thank you so much for your support and help.
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