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Pulmonary Rehabilitation: A New Hope For Breathless Patients

  By : , Kochi , India       17.1.2018         Phone:0484 669 9999          Mail Now
  Kuttisahib Road, Near Kothad Bridge, South Chittoor, Cheranalloor, Kochi, Kerala 682027

Dr. Jacob Baby
Senior Consultant Pulmonologist
Aster Medcity, Kochi

Staying Active with Pulmonary Rehabilitation

Some individuals get shortness of breath due to lung problems like asthma, bronchitis, COPD, and even anxiety. This often prevents them from undertaking any exercise or physical activity that can lead to their getting shortness of breath. Every time they start to exercise, they get short of breath and have to stop. But now there is a way to stay active with Pulmonary Rehabilitation.

Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program: Building The Ability To Exercise

Pulmonary rehabilitation is a programme or exercise and education for people with a long-term lung condition. Pulmonary rehabilitation can help reduce shortness of breath and increase an individualís ability to exercise. It helps manage breathing problems, increases stamina or energy and decreases breathlessness.

The Pulmonary rehabilitation program trains an individual to be ďin chargeĒ of his breathing instead of the breathing being in charge. It teaches how to pace breathing with the activities, and also on the right medicines to help continue the exercises.

A Pulmonary rehabilitation team supervises the exercise sessions which are personalized to the individual. The exercises start at a level that the person can handle. Some people may start exercising while sitting and others on a

treadmill depending on their capacity. There is a gradual increase in the duration of the exercise and the level of difficulty. As the muscles get stronger, reduced breathlessness and fatigue will give way to more activity.

The duration of a Pulmonary rehabilitation program varies with the individual and his needs. The patientís progress is constantly monitored by the patientís staff as the gradual increase in intensity of exercises takes place. It is important for the patient to attend every session.

A Pulmonary rehabilitation program is initiated for an initial period of 4 weeks, with two sessions every week. Based on the response, the program is then continued for another 8-10 weeks. Pulmonary rehabilitation programs have limited patients to ensure each participation gets close supervision. Patients are evaluated by a Pulmonologist †before beginning the program to make sure there are no health issues that would limit their ability to join. A team of health care professionals comprising nurses, respiratory therapists, physical therapists, occupational therapists, dieticians, social workers and pulmonologists work with the patients to ensure that they are put you in charge of their breathing.

The program also has an education component which takes place one-on-one with the professional staff. During group sessions, the patient will learn new ways to breathe during stress and physical activity. Patients practice new breathing techniques to be used during exercise. Many patients are surprised to find that while previously walking across the room made them breathless, after the program they can standard exercises without breathing problems. The type and amount of exercise depends on the patientís current abilities and will improve as they get stronger, and they will be able to perform increased intensity of exercises.

Sessions begin with stretching exercises or warm ups, followed by exercises for arms and legs. Usually patients will do exercises to build both strength and endurance (or stamina). The pulmonologist will also give advice on medication in coordination with concerned doctors.

The Pulmonary rehabilitation program benefits patients by building confidence and teaches them to exercise safely. After attending pulmonary rehabilitation, patients are frequently amazed at how much they can exercise and how much less short of breath they are.

TAGS: pulmonary rehabilitation,   pulmonary rehab,   pulmonary rehab benefits,   lung disease and exercise,   exercise for breathless patients,   pulmonology,  

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