COPD and Other Stuff

This is a patient-to-patient blog to exchange information and resources...from COPD to Arthritis to Cellulites to Sarcoidosis to Sleep Apnea to RLS to Psoriasis to Support Groups to Caregivers and all points in between.
Subscribe to RSS
Back to COPD and Other Stuff

Posts Tagged ‘oxygen’

Good Sleep Health and Sleep Apnea – Tomorrow!

Tuesday, July 19th, 2011

Good Sleep Health and Sleep Apnea

Speaker:  Jess Lackey of Pacific Pulmonary Inc.

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

1:00pm – 3:00pm

Rose Room – Harrison Silverdale

1800 NW Myhre Road – Silverdale, WA 98383

 

Better Breathers Support Group

“Our Better Breathers support group encompasses community members and their caregivers who live with chronic respiratory disease and lung disease. Better Breathers is designed to provide support, education, networking, and tools to improve the daily lives of those living with these health conditions.

 

We welcome any community member with asthma, emphysema, chronic bronchitis, sarcoidosis, asbestosis, pulmonary hypertension, pulmonary fibrosis and the many more lung diseases affecting our population, pediatric or adult.

Please email or call if you will need assistance with parking at the meeting.”

Contact: Pamela O’Flynn   – 360-744-6687 –  respiratorycare@harrisonmedical.org

****

My sleep apnea story in short form:  Some ten years ago the Sleep Study and bi-pap machine enabled me to get back into a bed after a few years of sleeping in a chair…I could not breathe lying down so had to sleep in a recliner chair…comfortable though it was, it was not a bed.

During this last year after an at home study I discovered my saturation numbers hit the basement while sleeping – bottoming out into the low 70’s.  100 is normal and nobody knew it…who knows how long that went on?

One of the questions I will be asking tomorrow:  Why don’t the c-pap or bi-pap machines monitor the patient’s blood/oxygen level during sleep to alert the doctor there is a problem.  Hint: After a length of time without oxygen, brain cells die.  http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/001435.htm

During sleep how low can the blood/oxygen levels go and for how long before brain cells die?  Personally, I want to hug and cherish my brain cells from a distance and keep them going as long as possible.

A sharp Harrison Medical Center ER doc caught a problem and had me put on a concentrator that gathers oxygen from the room and bleeds it into my bi-pap – leading to better sleep.  Except when the RLS bounces me right out of bed to move my legs and walk around.

Ignoring Sleep Apnea can lead to serious stuff – we need to be aware.

Tomorrow is the opportunity to ask the questions and have fun at the same time.

Refreshments!

See you Wednesday!  If anyone needs a ride, let me know.

Following are photos of my concentrator connected to the bi-pap and connected to the facemask that goes over my nose and blows air into my airway.

Some folks say the c-pap and bi-pap is too noisy.  I call it the sweet song of life.

Thanks for reading… Sharon O’Hara


A New Study for COPDers: Mechanism of Greater Oxygen Desaturation during Walking Compared with Cycling in COPD.

Tuesday, February 8th, 2011

Do COPDers desaturate more walking than they do cycling?  I’ve said ever since I discovered the recumbent trike existed that the recumbent trike was God’s gift to the COPDer…indeed, anyone with physical limitations.

Pedaling around the bay from the ferry on Whidbey Island with the American Lung Association of Washington’s Trek Tri Island three day cycling trip one early morning a few years ago was the first time I felt ‘normal’ again in about 7 years and the same length of time I’d gone anywhere overnight since a stay in Harrison Medical Center in 1997.

In those days I didn’t have a hip problem so I could walk without a problem other than shortness of breath but the recumbent trike lets us take our comfortable seat everywhere we pedal and stop whenever we need to take a break.  It also builds the legs muscles better and faster (my opinion) than walking and it is sure more fun and faster.

My point is wondering what the following study means in practical terms – to us, the patient.  I am one of those who do not desaturate enough for oxygen while awake.

Is cycling less strain or easier on our lungs than walking?

************

“Chest. 2011 Jan 27. [Epub ahead of print]

Mechanism of Greater Oxygen Desaturation during Walking Compared with Cycling in COPD.

Mahler DA, Gifford AH, Waterman LA, Ward J, Machala S, Baird JC.

1 Section of Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine Dartmouth Medical School, Lebanon, NH, USA.

BACKGROUND: Patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) exhibit greater oxyhemoglobin desaturation during walking than with cycling. The purpose of this investigation was to investigate differences in ventilatory responses and gas exchange as proposed mechanisms for this observation.

METHODS: Arterial blood gases and lactate were measured in 12 patients with COPD (age, 68 ± 6 years) during incremental treadmill and cycle exercise. The primary outcome to assess the ventilatory response to exercise was the partial pressure of alveolar oxygen (P(A)O(2)). The primary outcome to assess impairment in exercise gas exchange was the difference between partial pressures of alveolar and arterial oxygen (P(a)O(2)) (AaPO(2)).

RESULTS: P(a)O(2) was significantly lower at peak exercise for treadmill walking (51.4 ± 6.8 mmHg) compared with cycling (60.4 ± 10.7 mmHg) (p = 0.002). The initial increase in P(A)O(2) with cycling occurred prior to the onset of the anaerobic threshold. At peak exercise, P(A)O(2) was significantly higher with cycling compared with walking (p = 0.004). The anaerobic threshold occurred at a lower VO(2) during cycling than walking (p = 0.001), and peak lactate levels were higher with cycling (p = 0.019). With progressive exercise, AaPO(2) increased similarly during treadmill and cycle exercise.

CONCLUSIONS: The higher P(A)O(2) during cycling minimized the magnitude of oxyhemoglobin desaturation compared with walking. The enhanced respiratory stimulation during cycling appears due to an initial neurogenic process, possibly originating in receptors of exercising muscles, and a subsequent earlier onset of anaerobic metabolism with higher lactate levels during cycling.”

PMID: 21273296 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21273296?dopt=AbstractPlus

***************

I do not have a financial interest in any bike company including the recumbent trike.

More later…. Sharon O’Hara


Kitsap’s JELLY ROLL BLUES – Part Two: Smiles, Giggles, Tears at Harrison’s Emergency Preparedness BB Meeting

Thursday, January 27th, 2011

Kitsap’s  JELLY ROLL BLUES – Part Two:  Smiles, Giggles, Tears at Harrison’s Emergency Preparedness BB Meeting

We live in earthquake country.  We’ve jellied to varying degrees in the past and no doubt will again in the future.  So far we haven’t had a quake over magnitude 7.0 and that was in 1949.

More jelly jiggles and Shake, Rattle and Roll are in store for Kitsap County and surrounds.  What are we doing to prepare to take care of ourselves at least 72 hours?

Another quake or natural disaster – such as the last freeze and two day power outage in Silverdale is coming.  I don’t want to repeat the last one where everything we counted on, failed, including the generator and we lived inside where the temperature dropped to 40 degrees over the two days without heat or bi-pap and concentrator.

http://pugetsoundblogs.com/copd-and-other-stuff/2011/01/21/smiles-giggles-tears-at-harrisons-emergency-preparedness-bb-meeting/

**************

“Earthquake activity:

Kitsap County-area historical earthquake activity is slightly above Washington state average. It is 235% greater than the overall U.S. average.

 

On 4/13/1949 at 19:55:42, a magnitude 7.0 (7.0 UK, Class: Major, Intensity: VIII – XII) earthquake occurred 26.2 miles away from the county center, causing $80,000,000 total damage

On 2/28/2001 at 18:54:32, a magnitude 6.8 (6.5 MB, 6.6 MS, 6.8 MW, Depth: 32.2 mi, Class: Strong, Intensity: VII – IX) earthquake occurred 36.5 miles away from the county center, causing $2,000,000,000 total damage and $305,000,000 insured losses

On 4/29/1965 at 15:28:43, a magnitude 6.6 (6.6 UK) earthquake occurred 25.1 miles away from the county center, causing $28,000,000 total damage

On 7/3/1999 at 01:43:54, a magnitude 5.8 (5.4 MB, 5.5 MS, 5.8 MW, 5.3 ME, Depth: 25.2 mi, Class: Moderate, Intensity: VI – VII) earthquake occurred 47.5 miles away from Kitsap County center

On 5/3/1996 at 04:04:22, a magnitude 5.5 (5.2 MB, 5.3 MD, 5.5 ML, Depth: 2.5 mi) earthquake occurred 44.2 miles away from the county center

On 2/14/1981 at 06:09:27, a magnitude 5.5 (5.1 MB, 4.8 MS, 5.5 ML) earthquake occurred 84.8 miles away from the county center

Magnitude types: body-wave magnitude (MB), duration magnitude (MD), energy magnitude (ME), local magnitude (ML), surface-wave magnitude (MS), moment magnitude (MW)”

Read more: http://www.city-data.com/county/Kitsap_County-WA.html#ixzz1CFUSNERU

A few key points from the outstanding and powerful program put on by Pamela O’Flynn, RRT, MBA Respiratory Care Department, Harrison Medical Center and the American Lung Association’s, Better Breathers (BB) caught my attention.  For a super reference booklet – get the 12-month Preparedness Calendar for the full story.

Contact your local hotels/motels for their pet policy.  Next time, should the generator fail us again, we’ll pack up the dogs and head for a dog friendly hotel and drag the bi-pap and concentrator along.

We were told to pack what we generally eat for our 72 hour Comfort Kit – the total opposite of what I used to pack and take in the mountains during the old horse packing and hiking years.   Food that was lightweight, easy to cook and nutritious for the weight was key in what I chose for such trips…not necessarily what I ate at home.

The difference will show up in our bodily functions – “Eat what the body is used to…” And the interesting Poo Bags were mentioned.

The go anywhere toilet kit includes:

  • Waste bag pre-loaded with Poo Powder gelling deodorizing agent.
  • Outer zip-close disposal bag.
  • Natural odor control and decay catalyst
  • 1 hand sanitizer
  • 1 toilet paper

I bought mine online at REI, but they are probably sold locally at any of the sports stores.

Our homes should be earthquake proofed including anchoring furniture to the walls. Laura Jull, CEM, CHSP, Emergency Preparedness Coordinator at Harrison Medical Center, uses Museum Wax to anchor down small items to the shelf.

600 thousand pets were never found or missing after Katrina – no one was prepared for the magnitude of the storm.  A lesson learned there carries over here…and provisions are being made for our pets in case of a disaster.

For those on oxygen, bi-pap, c-pap or concentrators, register to be on a Special Needs list and shelter.  Contact the Fire Department and get on the Power Company list.

Contact your Oxygen Company and ask what provisions they have in place for their clients during a disaster.

Additional information and to get your 12-month Preparedness Calendar:

‘Our Better Breathers support group meets quarterly monthly  in the Rose room at Harrison Silverdale. Please call 360-744-6685 for dates and information. ‘   http://www.harrisonmedical.org/home/calendar/4885

Sheriff Boyer is Kitsap County’s emergency coordinator – I hope he/department will see Pam’s Katrina slide presentation and get her viewpoints based on her real life experiences working in a hospital so badly affected during and after Katrina – as were they all badly affected.  Her hard earned insight should prove helpful for that day coming in our future….in my opinion.

I am still unable to get the photos here from this computer … later

More later… Sharon O’Hara


Smiles, Giggles, Tears at Harrison’s Emergency Preparedness BB Meeting

Friday, January 21st, 2011

Greetings:  What I thought would be an easy chat about the need for patients to prepare for a natural disaster has turned out quite the opposite and it won’t be done in one blog post.  This is part One of Two.

Kitsap County got lucky.  Pamela O’Flynn, RRT, MBA Respiratory Care Department Director, Harrison Medical Center has firsthand experience what happens when we’re not prepared for a disaster.  She is a whirlwind force fighting to get all of us prepared as best we can – NOW.

Harrison Respiratory Center’s Emergency Preparedness meeting on Wednesday, 19 January was the most intense learning experience I’ve had in years.  We alternated tears, laughter, even giggles when Pam tried to look disheveled as she shuffled along the wall demonstrating how the exhausted medical staff moved and worked during the Katrina natural disaster and the weeks and months following the good, bad and ugly aftermath of a storm and disaster no one was prepared for as Pam, along with others, lost her home 40 miles inland from the hurricane storm surge.

The good was the bonding of the medical staff and all who worked for the common cause of helping others without supplies to do it.

We sat shocked, saddened and teary as Pam described why Emergency Preparedness was vital for our survival here and briefly described how, during the horrific Katrina disaster they were not prepared for the scope of the disaster.  Pam described how oxygen patients came to the hospital asking for oxygen and she was forced to turn them away knowing their fate without it.  The hospital ran out of what they had…no one was prepared…they didn’t know anything could turn out so badly.  They learned from it and that experience will help us here, now.

We got firsthand glimpses of a hospital and medical providers under siege and unimaginable duress.

On the flip side we got glimpses of powerful bonds forged out of desperate need and innovative creative means to help patients.

Laura Jull, CEM, CHSP Emergency Preparedness Coordinator at Harrison Medical Center was full of vital information and came prepared with essential handouts, including al  12-Month Preparedness Calendar Courtesy of Washington State Emergency Management Division http://www.emd.wa.gov/ -

Contact respiratorycare@harrisonmedical.org for the packets and specific information.

For starters sign up for emergency alerts and newsletter:

https://www.piersystem.com/go/site/1082/

Kitsap County Department of Emergency Management

KCDEM’s Alert and Warning Sign-Up Page

Following are a few photos.

Hopefully my desktop will work smoothly from here on out – thanks to my husband, the Old Guy.  He spent the past two days trying to get it to work.

More later, including the photos I couldn’t get in…  Sharon O’Hara


The Sleep Apnea Story is Now Restless and Worried in Kitsap County. What Happens to Oxygen Deprived Cells?

Sunday, August 8th, 2010

The new wrinkle in the Sleep Apnea Story is the apparent fact that patients are dropping their sats during the night wearing their c-pap or bi-pap machine and unless they do another at home sleep study wearing their machine – they don’t know it – nor do their doctors!

How can it happen the patient is happy as a clam at high tide thinking the machine is keeping their airway open so they can get the sleep needed when their oxygen saturation drops into the sleep basement during the night and killing off cells from lack of oxygen!????!

What good is any sleep machine when it does not register the patient’s sats and report it to their doctor?

I have a longer story to go with these questions…but for now – I want answers. How many other sleep apnea folks have had, am having the same sat drop and don’t know it?

They know they are declining…and assume the decline is natural considering their medical condition and normal aging.

Again. What good are the machines if they are not conveying the oxygen saturation picture for each sleeping patient to their doctor?!

Read up more from Chris Henry’s great article in February…

http://www.kitsapsun.com/news/2010/feb/27/in-the-search-for-shuteye-many-come-up-empty/?comments_id=250497

More later…. Sharon O’Hara


A New Tess, No More Oxygen Tank and Hose in the Nose

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

Once upon a time, there was a woman called Tess who lives in Port Angeles. She wore a hose in her nose tethered to an oxygen tank that followed her wherever she went.

Without supplemental oxygen, Tess’s blood/oxygen saturation (normal is 100) dropped to 82 with mild exertion. Her FEV1 (standard gage

Tess, Fit and Living Life Without Oxygen

Fat and Sassy No More-.Healthy and Sassy Nowdays

for COPD) was 34.

Tess is an exuberant woman who knew the prognosis was not good.
Luckily, she learned of the University of Washington and UC San Francisco Schools of Medicine, Shortness of Breath Study, applied for the one-year study and was accepted.

COPDers are different and roughly, 10% of COPDers are Alpha. Alphas inherit the disease.
I am a plain COPDer, Tess is an Alpha and has already lost one brother and sister to the disease.

Immersed in the study, Tess began slowly and lasted five minutes on the treadmill. Gradually, with difficulty, she continued to increase her speed careful not to drop below the 90% saturation level.
Tess’ slow five minute beginning had jumped by the end of the first month, to 30 minutes at 2mph, and included increased speed and fast bursts of speed.

By the end of 6 months, Tess had lost 4 pounds and decided to join Weight Watchers to increase her weight loss. Exercise made her able to be more active but the weight loss needed more help. Time passed and Tess got stronger and dropped weight, including her cholesterol. The cholesterol dropped 50 points to a healthier 200 points.

By the end of the yearlong study, Tess lost over 40 pounds and walked a steady 3.5 mph on the treadmill. She nearly tripled her speed in the final study 6-minute walk from the first 6-minute walk.

Now we are coming to the part I do not understand…Tess does not need oxygen anymore, her sats stay above 95 and she had all the oxygen equipment picked up and out of her house.

Until now, I have thought once on oxygen, always on oxygen. Wrong.

Tess has lost 52 pounds to date and looks forward to her son’s wedding in two weeks without worry about running out of oxygen nor the hassle and worry of dragging a tank around.

The opportunity to join the University of Washington’s Shortness of Breath Study ends this month, March 2010.

I wholeheartedly recommend and urge COPDers to apply…your life will change for the better. More importantly, the combined results of the study will benefit COPDers who come after us – our children and grandchildren.

Who are the researchers?
“The study is under the direction of Dr. Ginger Carrieri-Kohlman, Professor in the School of Nursing at UC San Francisco and Dr. Huong Q. Nguyen, Assistant Professor in the School of Nursing at University of Washington, Seattle. Dr. Carrieri-Kohlman is an internationally known expert in the research and treatment of dyspnea. She has led the Dyspnea Research Group on studies of shortness of breath self-management in patients with lung disease for over 15 years. Dr. Nguyen’s research has been focused on developing and testing Internet-based education and support interventions for people with chronic illnesses.

Our collaborators include Drs. Steve Lazarus and Josh Benditt from UC San Francisco and U Washington Schools of Medicine, respectively. They are both well known for their excellent research and clinical practice with people who have chronic lung disease.

We have a stellar research team: UCSF: DorAnne Cuenco, RN PhD, Krista Sigurdson, BS; UW: Pam Weisman, RN, MS, Lynn Reinke, RN, MS, Sarah Han, RN, and Cheryl Beardsless, BS. “

https://www.managesob.org/RS/StudyII/

More later… Sharon O’Hara


Meet Alec

Tuesday, December 1st, 2009

Alec is the flip side of the dancing COPDer you see in the television commercial. For the COPD TV commercial dancer, all it takes is one inhaler, a few puffs and like magic, the lungs are okay and off to the dance floor.

Alec is a COPDer on oxygen, living right here in Kitsap County. .Alec doesn’t dance, he is barely able to walk. The other day he walked for less than two minutes before he was exhausted and had to sit down. He has a doctor appointment with his primary in the next week or two and wonders if he can get strong enough by then to make the appointment.

When he called for an appointment with a lung specialist in town, he was told that he missed five appointments during the past twelve months and she wouldn’t give him another appointment. Ouch. I can relate to missed and late appointments with my doctors. None, so far, has refused to give me another appointment.

My phone rang last week and a man asked for me by name. He gave his name and went on to say he had gotten my name and phone number from a article Chris Henry wrote one month short of five years ago. The article mentioned physical fitness and EFFORTS, my online support group.
I told him about the years I wasted not knowing what I could do to help myself. It wasn’t until I found EFFORTS (Emphysema Foundation For Our Right To Survive) online and learned to go BEYOND my shortness of breath to gain strength and muscle that life began again.
I encouraged Alec to begin rehab to get strength back and talk with the doctor he has a good relationship with to begin a team effort to regain as much muscle and fitness possible,..unless there is some medical reason he cannot exercise.

Alec didn’t know about Pursed Lip Breathing, the oximeter, none of the basic tools COPDers NEED to be the best we can be for the best quality life possible. He has not seen a doctor for his oxygen use in a year!.
We exchanged email addresses and this is where I became aware of unintentional gross neglect of a COPDer by not educating him in the most basic how to PLB breathe! He didn’t know why a COPDer has to exhale twice as long as he inhaled! Why not? How many other folks do we have in Kitsap County, feeling alone and trapped without knowledge and encouragement to work toward a better quality life?

I’m guessing Alec is the tip of the iceberg of ignored people right here who need help! COPD can be a gradually isolating disease.

I suggested he join ‘Walkers’ on EFFORTS, contact the American Lung Association of Washington and the Shortness of Breath Self-Management Study at the University of Washington.

Following are emails I exchanged with Alec and his permission to use here.
________________________________________
11/27/2009 8:32 AM

Hi Sharon..I contacted my doctor’s office, although he was off, and the nurse said go ahead and keep my appointment and discuss with him about being my medical partner in my quest with EFFORTS. Hope you are doing well.

*************************************

On Sun, 29 Nov 2009 09:29:29 -0800

Good morning Sharon….I am having a tough day today and have become discouraged ,a little. I thought I would exercise by walking slowly as many minutes as I could..If I didn’t have my faith in God, I don’t know where I would be! I started walking and realized just how bad of shape I’m in. I couldn’t make it 2 minutes ,with my 02 !!. Then I realized I hadn’t prayed or eaten or anything….and that’s not like me. So I prayed and ate and started again. I could barely make it over 2 minutes walking slowly. I realize you probably don’t want to hear all this, but I will leave you alone after this. I have a week from tomorrow to get in some kind of physical shape to make it to the my doctor’s appointment. I do want a better quality life. You have given me the inspiration to do that. I didn’t have much luck finding an exercise regimen on EFFORTS, so I will look on ALA for some ideas. I am going to keep moving forward no matter what happens, even if they are slow, or as you put it, one foot in front of the other! I just get down sometimes, but my God always picks me up and says…keep your eyes on Me, not your circumstances.. I’m sorry to unload all this on you, but I won’t bother you anymore. I will continue today to increase my minutes. Thanks for listening…..

*********************
To: “…
Sent: Sunday, November 29, 2009 11:07 AM
Subject: Re: Discouragement

…..call 911! Or your doc. No one should be in the kind of shape you mention and by yourself…no one!

Please…call for help…NOW. Sharon

*****************************************
On Sun, 29 Nov 2009 09:48:00 -0800

Sharon…I’m okay if I’m sitting down and not walking for a lengthy period.I don’t believe I need 911, as I breathe okay if I’m not walking or exercising.I’ll be okay.I think it sounded worse than it is! I’m alright! Please don’t worry yourself. Believe me, I know when I need 911……..Please…I’m so sorry I startled you …….


Sent: Sunday, November 29, 2009 11:26 AM
Subject: Re: Discouragement

Alec…Thank you for sharing with me. I’m astounded that no one has helped you build muscle and that you are alone through this and I wonder how many more of us are out ‘there’ that are in the same boat? We need to help each other with encouragement … will you give me permission to use this email exchange (I won’t use your name)to emphasize the NEED for education for COPDers in my blog?
Sharon

11/29/2009 12:12 PM
We’ll do it together, Alec…okay? AND, one day, you’ll be riding a recumbent trike…one step at a time, one cycle wheel turn at a time and have fun too.
God has a sense of humor, I am convinced of it. Do you have a goldfish, bird, birdfeeder…any pets?
You are not alone.
Sharon
**************************************************************
11/29/2009 9:34 AM

Yes, you are right Sharon. God is in control and has a sense of humor! There’s never been a doubt in my mind about that. I didn’t know you would get so worked up about it or I wouldn’t have e-mailed you. I’ve been here for over 4 yrs. by myself! I had a dog, but he got attacked by raccoons and had to be put down. I still cry about that one! Malcom. Great dog. Half Akita, half Spaniel. Big! He was 12 and had a hole tore in his throat by the raccoons over some dog food. Malcom stood his ground, but it cost him his life. Reminds me of ….yea….Jesus! The Vet said he could patch him up, but he was 12 and bigger dogs don’t live as long as smaller ones. He said he probably wouldn’t last long if he couldn’t eat. He couldn’t get up to eat. It was all so sad. I called the Humane Society and they came and carried him away. I’ll never forget the look in his eyes. But I’ll see him again when I join him in heaven.But it still hurts.Poster Child? Never considered myself one of those. I don’t want to lose what little freedom I have. Can you understand that? I hope so! If I told people just how bad I was they would freak out.We do need education in the rehab area. People caring about other people! My family lives out of state and I hate to ask someone to call me everyday or drop by because they all have families, except Louis, and he’s very busy at the church.My goal is to get healthy enough to ride my recumbent bike, go to church, prayer warrior’s on Thursdays, and to go and tell people how much their God loves them! Not to much to ask is it? Nothing is to big for God! I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me! I am going off-line to read my Bible and study. So I’ll talk to you later.One step at a time…you’re right. And fun….I used to love to swim. Couldn’t get me out of the water in the summer. You are a dear, with a big heart. Talk to you later…..Blessings…….

**********************************************************************
On Sun, 29 Nov 2009 09:21:42 -0800

Sharon…alot of people have said that I am brave to be on my own and in the shape I’m in. No one has even offered to help me get in shape. Maybe that tells me something about who my real friends are! I’m sure there are other people like me who are alone. If something serious happened I would be in a jam ,especially if I couldn’t dial the phone! But then again, most people I know have families and can’t come help me, plus I feel like I’m intruding, and I am, if I ask them to help. I have a single friend at church who is very busy with the holidays this time of year, but I don’t think he realizes how out of shape I’m in. Yes, you can use the e-mail exchange. I don’t know if I want to read it or not, but yes,use it. It’s just one of those things. I just happened to be alone when this all happened. What else can I do? I don’t think I’m bad enough to be in the hospital, but I do need someone to check on me daily or come by and see how I’m doing.. My friend came over yesterday and looked at my computer. I left a message for him to call me at his convenience when he gets home from church today. I’m going to ask him his opinion about whether I need to be in the hospital or a care center, since I live alone. He’ll be honest with me. …

The following article provides a good reason why COPDers tend to have panic attacks as they get more and more short of breath….

“The portion of our brains that is responsible for registering fear and even panic has a built-in chemical sensor that is triggered by a primordial terror — suffocation. A report in the November 25th issue of the journal Cell, a Cell Press publication, shows in studies of mice that the rise in acid levels in the brain upon breathing carbon dioxide triggers acid-sensing channels that evoke fear behavior.” More at http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091125134651.htm

Goals:
1. Education and rehabilitation for the COPDer.
2. Find the COPDers like Alex…let them know they are not alone and what they can do to help themselves to a more active life.
3. We can help each other if for nothing else but a cheery “Hi, How are you?” voice on the phone.
4. Where are you?

More later… Sharon O’Hara


World COPD Day Celebration 2009 is coming to Silverdale!

Tuesday, November 17th, 2009

WORLD COPD DAY CELEBRATION 2009 is tomorrow!

The University of Washington’s School of Nursing, Pam Wiseman is the speaker and will be in Silverdale, Wednesday, 18 November 2009 to speak in honor of World COPD Day.

Harrison Medical Center will honor COPD Day 2009 in the Rose Room at Harrison-Silverdale, Washington from 1:30pm to 3:30pm

The Shortness of Breath subject will include discussion on strategies on what we can do to help ourselves lead a quality life with COPD.

Pursed lip breathing, exercising and all the questions you can think to ask are included. We will get answers to what we can do to best help ourselves lead the best quality of life possible and help us remain the Captain of our own lifeship. Knowing these strategies can and will make a difference in our lives.

Caregivers, family and friends are welcome.

Refreshments

For more information:
Pam Wiseman, Shortness of Breath Study (206)616-8993
Eric Anderson, Harrison Medical Center (360)744-6686

I am a COPDer and fan of the recumbent trike as a superb way for us to exercise; gain muscle for optimal ability to breathe….since muscle utilizes oxygen better than flab.

I will bring one of my trikes tomorrow if anyone is interested and please note that I do not sell recumbent trikes nor benefit from anyone else selling them.

Hope to see you tomorrow!
More later… Sharon O’Hara


Dr. Tom Speaks … Like it or Not

Tuesday, September 8th, 2009

If COPD has a living guru in this nation, it is Thomas L. Petty, MD.

The following message is important and can save lives through early detection. Dr. Tom’s comment, “COPD is associated with numerous co-morbidities, and indeed, the entire body may become involved” is spot on….believe it… YES!

Since COPD diagnosis, then landing in the hospital in 1997, I have gone from being healthy and fit into my fifties to COPD and another EIGHT medical conditions. Each has its own set of ‘rules’. If I take pain pills for the Cellulites, I know that my respiratory system will be adversely affected….not a good thing with two lung diseases. The latest medication, Diovan, adds to the mix.

The point is that a COPD diagnosis is only the beginning of a medical adventure that need not happen with early detection…the simple Spirometry test.

Please, read Dr. Tom’s comments.
*****************************************
COPD Progress and Challenges 2009

By Thomas L. Petty, MD

In the four decades I’ve devoted to lung health, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease has been slow to excite the practicing physician. Yet COPD should create great enthusiasm because we have made so many advances in identification and treatment. Many new therapies are available that are effective and favorably influence the disease.

COPD is associated with numerous co-morbidities, and indeed, the entire body may become involved.1It is now regarded as a systemic disease.2Traditionally; COPD has included emphysema (loss of alveolar walls and loss of elastic recoil), chronic bronchitis, inflammation in the small and large airways, and various degrees of lung inflammation throughout the lung parenchyma.

More recently, bronchiectasis has been added to this spectrum, although there are significant differences in manifestations and pathogenesis with repeated bacterial infections playing a more prominent role in bronchiectasis than with emphysema and chronic bronchitis.

Spirometry’s significance

COPD is characterized by irreversible airflow obstruction as judged by simple spirometry. Only the FEV1is needed to judge the severity of airflow obstruction, although a number of other measurements of airflow volume and gas transfer (diffusion test) are commonly undertaken to assess the disease states in more detail.

Spirometry is used to monitor the course of disease. All physicians who treat COPD should have immediate access to spirometers, including primary care practitioners because of their growing involvement in COPD managment.

The benefits and barriers to spirometry have been summarized.3For some reason, there appears to be an unfortunate bias against spirometry, particularly in the diagnosis and assessment of early disease. This is where treatment has the opportunity to do the most good. It is astonishing that only 37 percent of hospitalized patients had a spirometric diagnosis of COPD at the time of a hospitalization for an exacerbation.4

Established therapies

Early diagnosis can change outcome of disease through smoking cessation and the selective use of a growing body of pharmacologic agents.5The pathogenesis of COPD relates to interaction of a complex array of genetic abnormalities under current study, interacting with environmental factors, most notably smoking, other dusts, and volatile compounds involved in various industries on a worldwide basis. Treatment focuses on eliminating these environmental factors.

Medications that are most useful in COPD are comparable to those used in asthma with reversible airflow obstruction. Thus, inhaled beta-agonists, corticosteroids, and in selected cases, anticholinergics are widely used in achieving better scientific scaffolding. Oral corticosteroids seem particularly effective in slowing the progress of disease.6

Active patients

Oxygen is established as an effective method of increasing not only the length, but quality of life for patients with COPD. At least 140,000 people with COPD and related disorders benefit from oxygen therapy in the U.S. alone. Ambulatory oxygen systems allow full activity, and they should be equipped with a pulse oximeter in order to monitor therapy’s effectiveness.

Portable oxygen concentrators are now approved for air travel. Most weigh about 10 pounds and deliver oxygen only by the demand mode; however, one exception weighs 17 pounds and gives up to 1 to 3 Liters of continuous flow.

Pulmonary rehabilitation is established as improving the exercise tolerance of many with COPD. Controlled clinical trials show pulmonary rehabilitation improves depression, anxiety, and somatic preoccupation, which are particularly common in the early stages of disease.7Most pulmonologists can provide the necessary breathing training, assistance in graded exercise, and other components that are key to patient and family education.

The future involves increased awareness of COPD among patients, physicians, and other health care providers.

COPD is the only disease increasing in morbidity and mortality among the top five killers, and by 2010, it is expected to become the third most common cause of death in the U.S. It resulted in direct and indirect losses of $30.4 billion to the U.S. economy in 2001. Approximately 16 million adult Americans have COPD, and it is very likely that a similar number have asymptomatic or even symptomatic lung disease that is neither diagnosed nor treated.

Thomas L. Petty, MD, MACP, Master FCCP, is chairman emeritus of the National Lung Health Education Program, Denver.

http://respiratory-care-sleep-medicine.advanceweb.com/Article/COPD-Progress-and-Challenges-2009.aspx

My next blog post will put money where my mouth is in a challenge to join me to prove that patients educated about their disease/s WILL make whatever lifestyle changes needed for the best health possible.

More later… Sharon O’Hara


Dr. Tom Speaks … Like it or Not

Tuesday, September 8th, 2009

If COPD has a living guru in this nation, it is Thomas L. Petty, MD.

The following message is important and can save lives through early detection. Dr. Tom’s comment, “COPD is associated with numerous co-morbidities, and indeed, the entire body may become involved” is spot on….believe it… YES!

Since COPD diagnosis, then landing in the hospital in 1997, I have gone from being healthy and fit into my fifties to COPD and another EIGHT medical conditions. Each has its own set of ‘rules’. If I take pain pills for the Cellulites, I know that my respiratory system will be adversely affected….not a good thing with two lung diseases. The latest medication, Diovan, adds to the mix.

The point is that a COPD diagnosis is only the beginning of a medical adventure that need not happen with early detection…the simple Spirometry test.

Please, read Dr. Tom’s comments.
*****************************************
COPD Progress and Challenges 2009

By Thomas L. Petty, MD

In the four decades I’ve devoted to lung health, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease has been slow to excite the practicing physician. Yet COPD should create great enthusiasm because we have made so many advances in identification and treatment. Many new therapies are available that are effective and favorably influence the disease.

COPD is associated with numerous co-morbidities, and indeed, the entire body may become involved.1It is now regarded as a systemic disease.2Traditionally; COPD has included emphysema (loss of alveolar walls and loss of elastic recoil), chronic bronchitis, inflammation in the small and large airways, and various degrees of lung inflammation throughout the lung parenchyma.

More recently, bronchiectasis has been added to this spectrum, although there are significant differences in manifestations and pathogenesis with repeated bacterial infections playing a more prominent role in bronchiectasis than with emphysema and chronic bronchitis.

Spirometry’s significance

COPD is characterized by irreversible airflow obstruction as judged by simple spirometry. Only the FEV1is needed to judge the severity of airflow obstruction, although a number of other measurements of airflow volume and gas transfer (diffusion test) are commonly undertaken to assess the disease states in more detail.

Spirometry is used to monitor the course of disease. All physicians who treat COPD should have immediate access to spirometers, including primary care practitioners because of their growing involvement in COPD managment.

The benefits and barriers to spirometry have been summarized.3For some reason, there appears to be an unfortunate bias against spirometry, particularly in the diagnosis and assessment of early disease. This is where treatment has the opportunity to do the most good. It is astonishing that only 37 percent of hospitalized patients had a spirometric diagnosis of COPD at the time of a hospitalization for an exacerbation.4

Established therapies

Early diagnosis can change outcome of disease through smoking cessation and the selective use of a growing body of pharmacologic agents.5The pathogenesis of COPD relates to interaction of a complex array of genetic abnormalities under current study, interacting with environmental factors, most notably smoking, other dusts, and volatile compounds involved in various industries on a worldwide basis. Treatment focuses on eliminating these environmental factors.

Medications that are most useful in COPD are comparable to those used in asthma with reversible airflow obstruction. Thus, inhaled beta-agonists, corticosteroids, and in selected cases, anticholinergics are widely used in achieving better scientific scaffolding. Oral corticosteroids seem particularly effective in slowing the progress of disease.6

Active patients

Oxygen is established as an effective method of increasing not only the length, but quality of life for patients with COPD. At least 140,000 people with COPD and related disorders benefit from oxygen therapy in the U.S. alone. Ambulatory oxygen systems allow full activity, and they should be equipped with a pulse oximeter in order to monitor therapy’s effectiveness.

Portable oxygen concentrators are now approved for air travel. Most weigh about 10 pounds and deliver oxygen only by the demand mode; however, one exception weighs 17 pounds and gives up to 1 to 3 Liters of continuous flow.

Pulmonary rehabilitation is established as improving the exercise tolerance of many with COPD. Controlled clinical trials show pulmonary rehabilitation improves depression, anxiety, and somatic preoccupation, which are particularly common in the early stages of disease.7Most pulmonologists can provide the necessary breathing training, assistance in graded exercise, and other components that are key to patient and family education.

The future involves increased awareness of COPD among patients, physicians, and other health care providers.

COPD is the only disease increasing in morbidity and mortality among the top five killers, and by 2010, it is expected to become the third most common cause of death in the U.S. It resulted in direct and indirect losses of $30.4 billion to the U.S. economy in 2001. Approximately 16 million adult Americans have COPD, and it is very likely that a similar number have asymptomatic or even symptomatic lung disease that is neither diagnosed nor treated.

Thomas L. Petty, MD, MACP, Master FCCP, is chairman emeritus of the National Lung Health Education Program, Denver.

http://respiratory-care-sleep-medicine.advanceweb.com/Article/COPD-Progress-and-Challenges-2009.aspx

My next blog post will put money where my mouth is in a challenge to join me to prove that patients educated about their disease/s WILL make whatever lifestyle changes needed for the best health possible.

More later… Sharon O’Hara


Available on Kindle

About This Blog

This is a patient to patient blog to exchange information and resources...from COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) to Arthritis to Cellulites to Sarcoidosis to Sleep Apnea to RLS to Psoriasis to Support Groups to Caregivers and all points in between. Written by Sharon O'Hara.

RSS Subscription

Categories

Archives