Stage II (Moderate) COPD
At this stage of the disease, symptoms worsen and begin to affect your daily life. Many people first learn they have COPD when it progresses to Stage II.
Symptoms in Stage II include constant coughing, usually with yellow or green mucus; shortness of breath even with minor activities like household chores; exhaustion; difficulty sleeping; and wheezing. Some people become confused or forgetful.
Patients with Stage II COPD begin to experience more exacerbations. This means that symptoms of the disease worsen, or flare up, for several days at a time. Most people with Stage II COPD have 50 to 79 percent of expected lung function.
Management of Stage II COPD becomes more complex. In addition to continuing the treatments used in Stage I, your doctor may also prescribe:
- Both short-acting and long-acting bronchodilators to improve breathing
- Pulmonary rehabilitation, which is designed to improve your quality of life with the help of therapists, doctors and nurses
- Regular visits to manage symptoms and tailor treatment as needed
- Steroids and antibiotics to treat flare-ups
If COPD at this stage is uncontrolled, flare-ups can lead to hospitalization.