COPD conditions

In Australia, chronic bronchitis and emphysema usually occur in people who have smoked or continue to smoke cigarettes, but they can be caused by environmental or genetic factors.  Asthma commonly occurs in non-smokers as well as smokers.  It is caused by a number of different factors including but not limited to the environment, allergy and genes.

A small number of people can get emphysema from an inherited protein deficiency called alpha-1-antitrypsin deficiency.