17 doctors weighed in:

If I stop smoking will that help heal my copd?

17 doctors weighed in
Dr. Yoram Padeh
Internal Medicine - Allergy & Immunology
6 doctors agree

In brief: Yes

COPD is caused by the accumulated damage created by exposure of the lungs to the toxins in cigarette smoke.
If smoking is stopped, no new damage occurs and some old damage can heal. However, just like with the skin, sometimes scarring is left behind which can leave permanent changes. Damage that is not yet "scarred" can often heal. The sooner the smoking stops, the better.

In brief: Yes

COPD is caused by the accumulated damage created by exposure of the lungs to the toxins in cigarette smoke.
If smoking is stopped, no new damage occurs and some old damage can heal. However, just like with the skin, sometimes scarring is left behind which can leave permanent changes. Damage that is not yet "scarred" can often heal. The sooner the smoking stops, the better.
Dr. Yoram Padeh
Dr. Yoram Padeh
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Dr. Andrew Carroll
Family Medicine
4 doctors agree

In brief: Yes

Some elements of your COPD will get much better after quitting smoking.
Depending on your age and how long you smoked, some of the changes in your lungs will be irreversible. However, the ability to clear secretions and keep harmful bacterial and dust out of your lungs will improve immensely, making your lungs function much better.

In brief: Yes

Some elements of your COPD will get much better after quitting smoking.
Depending on your age and how long you smoked, some of the changes in your lungs will be irreversible. However, the ability to clear secretions and keep harmful bacterial and dust out of your lungs will improve immensely, making your lungs function much better.
Dr. Andrew Carroll
Dr. Andrew Carroll
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Dr. Sue Ferranti
Internal Medicine
1 doctor agrees

In brief: Perhaps...

COPD is not curable but, by stopping your smoking, the airway inflammation will decrease thus decreasing your symptoms and allowing your lungs to heal to a certain extent.
They will not heal to normal but symptoms will decrease. Your risks of certain cancers, like lung cancer, will also decrease. Your doctor can help with smoking cessation.

In brief: Perhaps...

COPD is not curable but, by stopping your smoking, the airway inflammation will decrease thus decreasing your symptoms and allowing your lungs to heal to a certain extent.
They will not heal to normal but symptoms will decrease. Your risks of certain cancers, like lung cancer, will also decrease. Your doctor can help with smoking cessation.
Dr. Sue Ferranti
Dr. Sue Ferranti
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Dr. Theodore Cole
Family Medicine

In brief: Yes

Removing any irritants and toxins can take some of the load off of the lungs and enable the body to heal more effectively.
Try to avoid as many airborne toxins, fumes, and smoke as much as possible.

In brief: Yes

Removing any irritants and toxins can take some of the load off of the lungs and enable the body to heal more effectively.
Try to avoid as many airborne toxins, fumes, and smoke as much as possible.
Dr. Theodore Cole
Dr. Theodore Cole
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Dr. Paige Gutheil
Family Medicine

In brief: Yes

When one quits smoking, the body can start the healing process.
Symptoms often decrease and lung functions increases. The lungs may not totally regain all the function that they have lost, depending on how severe the copd, but the body has amazing healing power!

In brief: Yes

When one quits smoking, the body can start the healing process.
Symptoms often decrease and lung functions increases. The lungs may not totally regain all the function that they have lost, depending on how severe the copd, but the body has amazing healing power!
Dr. Paige Gutheil
Dr. Paige Gutheil
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Dr. Dean Giannone
Internal Medicine

In brief: No

COPD is a chronic and destructive process, so quitting smoking will typically not allow the lungs to heal.
You can potentially limit further damage by quitting, and you might breathe better after quitting, but it's unlikely the lungs will heal from such destruction in the long run.

In brief: No

COPD is a chronic and destructive process, so quitting smoking will typically not allow the lungs to heal.
You can potentially limit further damage by quitting, and you might breathe better after quitting, but it's unlikely the lungs will heal from such destruction in the long run.
Dr. Dean Giannone
Dr. Dean Giannone
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