Pulmonary Rehabilitation is a specially designed service that may help improve your breathing. This service combines exercise and education to help you achieve the best quality of life possible. This services is designed to help those who suffer from lung problems including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and restrictive pulmonary diseases like asthma, chronic bronchitis, cystic fibrosis, interstitial fibrosis and many others.
Benefits of participating in Pulmonary Rehabilitation include:
- Reduction in shortness of breath
- Improved endurance and independent function
- Increased knowledge of how to better manage current health conditions
- Better understanding of medications
What is COPD?
One of the most common lung diseases, COPD or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, can make it very difficult to breathe. Within your lungs bronchial tubes branch into thousands of smaller thinner tubes or bronchioles. Bronchioles end when they reach the tiny air sacs called alveoli. Small capillaries or blood vessels run through these air sacs. When air reaches these air sacs, oxygen passes through into the blood vessels. As air moves through the air sacs, they inflate and deflate like a balloon.
With COPD, less air flows in and out of the airways. This could occur for a number of reasons including:
- Airways and air sacs have lost their elastic quality.
- The walls between many of the air sacs are destroyed or have become inflamed.
- The airways make more mucus than usual and become clogged.
Cigarette smoking is one of the leading causes of COPD. Long-term exposure to irritants such as pollution, chemical fumes or dust can also cause COPD. COPD is a progressive condition which means it generally gets worth over time. Symptoms of COPD include:
- Coughing that often producing large amounts of mucus
- Shortness of breath
- Tightness of the chest
A program like Nanticoke’s Pulmonary Rehabilitation helps patients improve their lung function and manage symptoms of conditions such as COPD.
A physician referral is needed to participate in this program.