There is no definitive cure for COPD. Therapy is aimed at slowing the damage to the airways and relieving symptoms.
Bronchodilators (or relievers) are the main treatment for breathlessness caused by COPD. Although their relaxing effect on the airways is limited, they provide useful symptom relief.
In patients with severe COPD, regular use of inhaled corticosteroids may reduce exacerbations and symptoms.
In severe COPD, the level of oxygen in the blood is seriously reduced and supplementary oxygen may be very helpful.
In people with very advanced disease, oxygen is required most or all of the time.
Other drug therapies used in COPD include antibiotics for bronchial infections (“exacerbations”), mucolytics and antioxidants.
Lung transplantation is used occasionally in end-stage disease