What is COPD respiratory failure?

Lung failure. Respiratory failure is the inability of the lung to exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide. One of the main causes is COPD with decreased air flow and increased work of breathing . This may cause hypoxemia or hypercarbia or both.Treatment is designed to reverse those abnormalities including oxygen and bronchodilators. Mechanical support may be required for resistent disease.
Two issues. Respiratory failure in COPD is usually related to a buildup of carbon dioxide in the blood stream (known as hypercapnea). This results in lethargy, headache, poor breathing patterns and even coma. Hypoxic respiratory failure (related to low oxygen) can occur as well but is not as common as hypercapneic respiratory failure.
Serious problem. COPD stands for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. It's a problem with the lungs that makes it hard to breathe and can deprive the body of critical oxygen. With respiratory failure, the lungs are bad enough that a breathing tube and ventilator may be required. Treatment includes medications, oxygen, stopping smoking, and sometimes surgery depending on the exact cause of the problem.
Lung failure... Respiratory failure can occur due to a variety of problems, COPD being just one cause. Respiratory failure occurs when the patient cannot ventilate properly resulting in a high carbon dioxide level and a low oxygen level. Treating the underlying cause of the respiratory failure is vital as well as helping the patient to ventilate sometimes even w/ mechanical ventilation.

Related Questions

I had respiratory failure (cyanosis) during general anaesthetic. The doctor thinks it was anaphylaxis. I am now diagnosed with both COPD stage 2 and asthma. Were these conditions the more likely cause?

COPD is deadly. Anaphylaxis can happen with any drug, but acute postoperative respiratory failure is more commonly caused by underlying lung disease. Stopping smoking several weeks before surgery decreases risk for complications. Of course, the best thing anyone can do for better health is to stop smoking, especially those with lung disease. Smoking with lung disease is like rubbing dirt into a wound. Stop ASAP. Read more...
Respiratory failure. Cyanosis is a possible symptom of respiratory failure (RF). RF is a generalized term which indicates inadequate oxygenation and/or inadequate respiratory effort. Yes, the pre-surgical COPD and asthma were almost certainly the source of your problem. I won't mince words. Your smoking is the root cause of the event. Stop smoking or pick out a tombstone. Read more...