Is It Asthma, COPD or Both?

Asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) both affect the lungs, making it hard to breathe. While they are two different conditions, they do share many similarities and it is possible to have both at the same time, a condition called Asthma-COPD overlap syndrome.


Asthma is a common lung condition that causes difficulty breathing and can affect people of all ages. Some people with asthma may only have symptoms once in a while while others may have trouble breathing all the time.

Symptoms of Asthma:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Chest tightness
  • Coughing
  • Wheezing

A sudden, acute onset of symptoms is called an asthma attack. During an asthma attack, the above symptoms will increase in severity, and you may also experience an increased heartrate, blue lips/fingers, fainting, or dizziness.


COPD is the name given to a group of lung diseases that make it hard to breathe, including chronic bronchitis and emphysema. It usually affects people later in life, especially if they are smokers. COPD will progressively become worse as time goes on, but medication can help slow it down.

Symptoms of COPD:

  • Persistent productive cough
  • Frequent chest infections
  • Increased wheezing and breathlessness

Those who have ACOS aren’t suffering from a separate disease but have the symptoms of two distinctive diseases at the same time. People with ACOS have reduced lung function and will experience respiratory symptoms more often than those who have only asthma or only COPD.

Diagnosing ACOS

If you have COPD or asthma and you’re experiencing symptoms of ACOS, it’s important to speak to your doctor. It’s sometimes difficult to tell the difference between asthma, COPD, and ACOS, but your doctor will be able to help you reach a diagnosis. Getting diagnosed is important if you have ACOS because it’s much more serious than either of the other conditions on their own. There’s no cure for any of these diseases, but with a correct diagnosis you will be given the correct treatment options such as being prescribed inhalers. Additionally, if you’re a smoker, you should quit smoking to improve your lung health.

Asthma and COPD treatment like Salbutamol, Ventolin, and Clenil inhalers are available online in the UK from Pharmacy Planet.