- Emphysema is defined as a medical condition where there is air in body tissues or where the air sacs in the lungs are damaged in a way that causes shortness of breath.
A medical condition caused by years of smoking that damages the air sacs in your lungs and makes breathing hard is an example of emphysema.
- an abnormal swelling of body tissues caused by the accumulation of air; esp., such a swelling of the lung tissue, due to the permanent loss of elasticity, or the destruction, of the alveoli, which seriously impairs respiration
Origin of emphysemaModern Latin ; from Classical Greek emphysēma, inflation ; from emphysaein, to inflate, blow in ; from en-, in + physaein, to blow ; from Indo-European an unverified form phus- ; from base an unverified form pu-, an unverified form phu-, echoic of blowing with puffed cheeks
- A pathological condition of the lungs marked by an abnormal increase in the size of the air spaces, resulting in labored breathing and an increased susceptibility to infection. It can be caused by irreversible expansion of the alveoli or by the destruction of alveolar walls.
- An abnormal distension of body tissues caused by retention of air.
Origin of emphysemaGreek emphūsēma, inflation, from emphūsān, to blow in : en-, in; see en–2 + phūsān, to blow (from phūsa, bellows, bladder).
top: normal bronchiole and alveoli
bottom: diseased bronchiole with mucus, enlarged air sacs in the alveoli, and fewer capillaries