Respiratory Diseases


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    Respiratory diseases are one of the most common medical conditions in the world. The reason may be external factors such as cigarette consumption and air pollution, as well as genetic.
    Your lungs are part of a complex system that expands and relaxes thousands of times each day to receive oxygen and send carbon dioxide. If there is a problem in any part of this system, lung disease can occur and if not treated, it can lead to serious complications.
    Lung cancer, asthma, allergy, bronchitis, pneumonia, pleurisy, sarcoidosis, pneumothorax, and pulmonary embolism are among the diseases that are treated the most by Reyap Hospital’s pulmonary diseases department.
    In addition to the advanced radiological imaging techniques available in our hospital for the diagnosis of these diseases, facilities such as respiratory function laboratory, allergy tests, and bronchoscopy devices also support our physicians in providing modern treatment services to our patients.
    COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease)
    COPD is a common disease that demands long-term treatment processes, especially caused by smoking or inhalation of harmful dust particles, and COPD ranks 4th among causes of death. COPD is a progressive lung disease caused by a non-microbial inflammation of the airways.
    Causes of COPD
    Tobacco use is the main cause of COPD in developed countries. Besides, COPD often occurs in people exposed to fumes from fuel for cooking and heating in poorly ventilated homes. The most common reasons are;
    • Inhalation of occupational harmful gases and particles (microparticles)
    • Smoking
    • Air pollution
    Symptoms of COPD
    COPD symptoms do not usually occur until severe lung damage has occurred and usually worsens over time, especially if cigarette exposure continues. The most common symptoms of this disease are;
    • Coughing
    • Sputum production
    • Coughing up blood (blood in phlegm)
    • Shortness of breath
    • Chest congestion
    • Wheezing
    • Decreased oxygen saturation of the blood
    • Swollen the feet due to heart failure
    Effects of COPD on the body
    If your symptoms do not improve or worsen with treatment, and you notice signs of infection, such as fever or a change in sputum, you should make an appointment at the pulmonary diseases department. COPD symptoms occur due to the following effects on the body;
    • The airways narrow, meaning less oxygen enters the lungs.
    • The walls of the airways become thick and swollen.
    • Muscles around the airways contract.
    • Increased sputum inside the airways causes obstructions.
    • The air in the alveoli cannot be discharged back due to the obstruction, a feeling of tightness in the chest appears.
    COPD diagnosis
    COPD is often misdiagnosed and many people with COPD may not be diagnosed until the disease has progressed. For diagnosis, your doctor will take a detailed medical history and family history, as well as learn about risk factors such as smoking. Then the doctor does some tests.
    Respiratory function test
    These tests measure the amount of air you can breathe and whether your lungs are providing enough oxygen to your blood. During the most common test called spirometry, you blow into a large tube attached to a small machine to measure how much air your lungs can hold and how fast you can blow through your lungs. Other tests include measurement of lung volumes and spreading capacity, the six-minute walk test, and pulse oximetry.
    Chest x-ray
    A chest X-ray can show emphysema, one of the main causes of COPD. X-rays can also rule out other lung problems or heart failure.
    CT (Computed Tomography)
    A CT scan of your lungs can help detect emphysema and help determine whether you can benefit from COPD surgery. CT scans can also screen for lung cancer.
    Arterial blood gas analysis
    This blood test measures how well your lungs bring oxygen into your blood and remove carbon dioxide.
    Laboratory tests
    Laboratory tests are not for diagnosing COPD, but they can determine the cause of your symptoms or rule out other conditions. This test can be done if you have a family history of COPD and you develop COPD at a young age.
    Asthma is a disease in which the airways become narrow and swollen and can produce extra mucus. This can cause breathing difficulties and trigger coughing, whistling when exhaling (wheezing), and shortness of breath. For some people, asthma is a minor inconvenience. For others, it can be a major problem that interferes with daily activities and can lead to a life-threatening asthma attack.
    Asthma cannot be treated, but its symptoms can be managed with an appropriate treatment plan. Because asthma often develops over time, regular doctor check-ups are important to track your signs and symptoms and adjust your treatment as needed.
    Causes of asthma
    The answer to why some people have asthma is not clear, but it is thought to be caused by environmental and hereditary factors. Exposure to allergens can trigger asthma symptoms. Asthma triggers differ from person to person and can include:
    • Airborne allergens such as pollen, dust mites, mold spores, pet dander, or cockroach waste particles
    • Respiratory infections such as the common cold
    • Physical activity
    • Cold weather
    • Air pollutants and irritants such as smoke
    • Some medications
    • Emotional fluctuations and stress
    • Sulfites and preservatives added to some types of food and beverages, including shrimp, dried fruit, processed potatoes, beer, and wine
    • Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
    Symptoms of asthma
    Asthma symptoms vary from person to person. You may have infrequent asthma attacks, and your symptoms may only occur at certain times – for example, when exercising. It is also possible for asthma attacks to occur frequently and for no apparent reason. The most common asthma symptoms;
    • Shortness of breath
    • Tightness or pain in the chest
    • Wheezing when exhaling, a common symptom of asthma in children
    • Sleep problems caused by shortness of breath, coughing or wheezing
    • Coughing or wheezing episodes worsened by a respiratory virus such as the common cold or flu
    Asthma diagnosis
    Your doctor will do a physical examination to rule out other possible diseases such as respiratory infection or COPD. Your doctor will also ask you questions about your signs, symptoms, and other health problems. Asthma is diagnosed as a result of tests performed to measure lung function.
    This test predicts the narrowing of your bronchial tubes by checking how much air you can exhale and how fast you can exhale after a deep breath.
    Peak flow meter
    The peak flow meter is a simple device that measures how much you can breathe. Lower than normal peak flow values are a sign that your lungs are not working well and your asthma is getting worse. Your doctor will give you instructions on how to monitor low peak flow readings and how to deal with them.
    Lung function tests are usually done before and after taking medicine to open your airways called a bronchodilator, such as albuterol. If your lung function improves with the use of a bronchodilator, you likely have asthma.
    Imaging tests
    A chest X-ray can help identify structural abnormalities or diseases (such as infection) that could cause or aggravate breathing problems.
    Allergy test
    Allergy tests can be done through a skin test or a blood test. If allergy triggers are detected, your doctor can prescribe a treatment for it.

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