Understand how having COPD may increase your risk for other diseases
Having COPD may increase your risk of other health conditions and vice versa. These conditions are called comorbidities because they occur at the same time. Understanding your risks for these conditions can help you work with your doctor and learn what to watch for.
Types of COPD comorbidities
Heart disease. COPD increases your risk of heart attack, heart failure, and chest pain.
Pulmonary hypertension. COPD may cause high blood pressure in the arteries that supply blood to your lungs.
Repeat infections, like pneumonia. COPD increases your risk of complications from colds and the flu.
Osteoporosis. Low levels of vitamin D, inactivity, and smoking can increase the risk of bone loss and weak bones. Certain COPD medications may also cause bone loss.
Depression and anxiety. Many people with COPD may experience depression and anxiety.
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). This condition can inflame your throat and lead to more COPD symptoms and exacerbations.
Obstructive sleep apnea. People with COPD may have repeated episodes of upper airway closure during sleep.
Lung cancer. Smoking increases the risk of lung cancer as well as COPD.