If you're seeing this message, it means we're having trouble loading external resources for Khan Academy.

If you're behind a web filter, please make sure that the domains *.kastatic.org and *.kasandbox.org are unblocked.

What is emphysema?

VIDEO 7:30 minutes
Emphysema is a chronic medical condition (most often caused by smoking and air pollution) where lung tissue is damaged and traps air inside the lung. Learn how shortness of breath, persistent cough, and wheezing are common symptoms of this ...

Emphysema pathophysiology

VIDEO 5:40 minutes
Smoking and air pollution cause the alveoli in the lungs stiff and less stretchy, making it difficult for air to escape during exhalation. Learn how the destruction of the protein elastin is key to the progression of emphysema, and how the ...

Emphysema diagnosis

VIDEO 7:27 minutes
How do we know a patient has emphysema? Learn how the lungs in chest x-rays look hyperinflated, how spirometry can reveal decreased lung function, and what all those blood tests mean.

Diffusing capacity of the lung for carbon monoxide (DLCO)

VIDEO 10:03 minutes
Diffusing capacity of the lungs for carbon monoxide (DLCO) is a medical test that determines how much oxygen travels from the alveoli of the lungs to the blood stream. Learn what DLCO is, how DLCO a good measure of lung disease severity, ...

Centriacinar emphysema vs panacinar emphysema

VIDEO 4:43 minutes
Centriacinar and panacinar are different classifications of disease emphysema based on the location of the damaged lung tissue. Learn how inflammation can give rise to centriacinar emphysema, and how a deficiency in alpha-1-antitrypsin can ...

Emphysema treatment

VIDEO 10:21 minutes
The best way to prevent and manage emphysema is to stop smoking. Learn how drugs such as bronchodilators, antibiotics, and steroids can be used to manage the symptoms of emphysema.