Asthma is a disease that causes the airways to become inflamed. The inflammation then causes the airways to become sensitive to allergens or irritants. The inflamed tissue reacts to these substances, causing the airways to swell, narrowing air passages. The narrowing reduces airflow to your lung tissue, resulting in symptoms like wheezing, coughing, chest tightness and trouble breathing.
COPD describes a group of lung conditions that block airflow and make it difficult to breathe. This can lead to shortness of breath, wheezing or a chronic cough. Chronic bronchitis and emphysema are the most common conditions that make up COPD.