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Does emphysema progress if you quit smoking?
Students in my Not On Tobacco class asked me a question I couldn't answer today about emphysema.  If a person has been diagnosed with emphysema and stops smoking, does the emphysema continue to get worse or can it go into some kind of remission?  
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190673 tn?1259206866
Most often, once the person who has emphysema quits smoking, the progression of the illness stops or significantly reduces. The lungs will not get back to normal but if not exposed to smoke and other poisons, it is likely to stay the way it is once the person quit smoking.

My father has it and since he quit smoking 7 years ago his emphysema has not changed.
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