However, research shows that there are certain things you can do that may be able to extend your life and slow down the progression of the disease. Respir Care. Radiation therapy - questions to ask your doctor. Seven questions to ask your patients about asthma. He will then consider the results of these tests along with your symptoms and medical history to come up with a diagnosis. We provide patient-friendly resources to help you better understand your condition. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease damages your lungs. A COPD diagnosis can leave you overwhelmed, but asking the right questions can help. He should also go over basic safety precautions for handling your oxygen equipment to prevent dangerous fires and other accidents. That's why it's important to ask your doctor to explain all of the potential health complications related to COPD. There’s a lot of information to process. This can make it hard for you to get enough oxygen and clear carbon dioxide from your lungs. Never smokers with no lung disease have a life expectancy of 17.8 additional years. What Is the Risk of Lung Cancer After Quitting Smoking? In order to get the best treatment possible, you need to keep track of all your questions, articulate your concerns, and remember to bring them up with your doctor when you have the chance. By using your doctor as a resource and following his advice, you may be able to significantly reduce the negative toll that COPD has on your life. Although a true COPD diagnosis requires medical testing, research has discovered that there are five questions that are good indicators that this condition may be present. Top 8 Questions to Ask Your Doctor About COPD A COPD diagnosis can leave you overwhelmed, but asking the right questions can help. Some of you who are reading this blog might remember such times. Current smokers with stage 1 COPD have an average life expectancy of 14 years. However, every case of COPD is different, and how quickly your symptoms progress depends on many factors, including your current health, lifestyle, and medical history. The truth is that what and how much you eat can have a noticeable effect on your COPD. Int J Chron Obstruct Pulmon Dis. Don’t be shy, ask! Here are seven questions to ask your doctor about COPD: 1. You’ve been diagnosed with COPD. Your doctor is there to help you address all aspects of your health and wellness, not just diagnose you and prescribe medication. This is a quiz that contains NCLEX review questions about COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease). Chemotherapy - what to ask your doctor. Still, no matter what stage your official diagnosis says, the disease affects everyone differently. What Is Stage 1 Lung Cancer Life Expectancy? Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) damages your lungs. A wide variety of different things can be COPD triggers, including fragrances, air pollution, allergens, and certain weather conditions. There is really no such thing as a "dumb question"! For example, eating a healthy diet and getting plenty of exercise can stave off a variety of COPD-related diseases, including heart disease, depression, and diabetes. 2. 1. Or chronic coughing? Questions to ask your doctor about chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) You must never be embarrassed to ask your doctor a question about your COPD. Keep in mind that COPD has a variety of stages and treatments, so it is important to stay informed. Continue to ask questions and get as much information as you can as your symptoms change and your disease progresses. Below are some questions you may want to ask your health care provider to help you take care of your lungs. The general goal of COPD treatment is to keep your oxygen saturation level above 88%. Given this, all patients presenting with an apparent new diagnosis of COPD should undergo a baseline chest X-ray to ensure their symptoms are not instead due to a first presentation of lung cancer. Keep in mind that COPD has a variety of stages and treatments, so it is important to stay informed. Take these questions with you to your next health care professional visit. The list may seem endless. It's a good idea to discuss the possibility of oxygen therapy with your doctor early on in case you need it at some point during treatment. Like all adults, it's important for people with COPD to eat a well-balanced diet full of whole foods, lean meats, and lots of fruits and veggies. However, quitting smoking is no trivial task; it is extremely difficult, and most people try quitting many times before they are successful. Both COPD and lung cancer share smoking as a common risk factor, while the presence of COPD itself acts as an additional independent risk factor for lung cancer. Depending on the type and severity of side effects you experience, your doctor may advise you to stop the medication, reduce your dosage, or switch to a different type of medicine. Working with your healthcare team and asking the right questions can help you better understand how COPD affects you and learn how to manage your symptoms. These tests reveal some very important things about your lungs, your heart, and your overall health. When did your breathing symptoms first start? 2011;6:259-67. doi:10.2147/COPD.S10771, Branson RD. These might include questions about your health, your disease, your medications, your treatment options, and more. For instance, your lungs could be primarily affected by emphysema but also show signs of mild chronic bronchitis. 2018;63(6):734-48. doi:10.4187/respcare.06312, Thabut G, Mal H. Outcomes after lung transplantation. There are three types of lung surgery your doctor may discuss with you once your symptoms are severe enough and you've reached the most advanced stages of the disease: bullectomy, lung volume reduction surgery, and lung transplant. COPD NCLEX Questions. Here are a few examples of common COPD medications along with their potential side effects: And important part of learning to manage your COPD symptoms is knowing about COPD triggers. You should ask your doctor to be specific. With the right treatment plan and support network, COPD can be managed to preserve your quality of life. Surgical intervention is an option for a small group of patients who meet very specific criteria. Continuing to smoke both worsens COPD symptoms and causes your lung function to decline more quickly. Whenever your doctor does a test, he should show you the data and take the time to explain your results in terms you can understand. It’s something you can research on your own through credible sources. Your doctor should provide you with a COPD action plan that explains, in brief, your daily medications along with which medications to take when your symptoms get worse. Exercise is not only safe, but extremely beneficial, for the vast majority of people with COPD. Here are some questions that are important to ask your doctor after being diagnosed with COPD and about oxygen therapy. What Should You Ask Your Pulmonologist? These may include quick-relief inhalers, maintenance inhalers, anti-inflammatory medications, corticosteroids, antibiotics, and more. 1. In order to work at their optimum level, your lungs need lots of nutrients for fuel. Ask him to explain your test results, how exactly he made his diagnosis, and where you fit on the spectrum of COPD severity. How is it treated? Make, MD , Irina Petrache, MD (September 01, 2016) At one time or another, people with COPD think about various tough questions that can be hard to discuss with anyone. Questions to Ask Your Doctor About COPD . What is your prognosis? Let’s Get Specific: Have No Fear of Asking Your COPD Questions: As we said above, some of you might not be accustomed to this philosophy of 2–way medical communication. If you've been diagnosed with COPD, you probably have a lot of questions for your doctor about the disease. Can you explain the tests you are running? Eur J Epidemiol. Patients who have COPD are experiencing limited airflow due to obstructive pulmonary disease. That way, he can explain how oxygen therapy works and how he will determine if and when you need to use supplemental oxygen. You may be wondering why you should quit smoking when you've smoked for decades and the damage to your lungs has already been done. Don’t be shy, ask! hbspt.cta._relativeUrls=true;hbspt.cta.load(3306744, 'b59df0c1-c4de-47a8-8e1c-0d33d4b414aa', {}); However, it can be easy to get distracted or forget any questions you have once you're actually in the office with your doctor. Kidney stones - what to ask your doctor. You should also ask your doctor to give you a printed and signed list of all the medications you take, both prescription and over-the-counter. He can also give you tips for reducing shortness of breath and managing your symptoms during physical activity. Here are some questions that are important to ask your doctor after being diagnosed with COPD and about oxygen therapy. That's why it's so important to find a doctor that you can trust and communicate with openly. COPD - what to ask your doctor What to ask your doctor about COPD; Emphysema - what to ask your doctor; Chronic bronchitis - what to ask your doctor; Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease - what to ask your doctor. Now that you have the resources to learn and know more about your COPD symptoms, testing, and treatment options; you can ask your doctor some of these questions to better advocate for yourself. He has never wanted me to go to any doctors appointments with him...until now. • What treatment should I have? COPD can take a major toll on your quality of life, especially in the more advanced stages. Often, you need to talk to your doctor and get a recommendation in order to join. In general, the best way to slow how quickly COPD gets worse is to always take your medication and make the healthy lifestyle changes your doctor recommends. Your healthcare provider will be more than willing to help you make your COPD journey more tolerable. You should also tell your doctor all about your lifestyle and home environment so he can help you identify any activities or conditions in your life that might trigger your symptoms. Your doctor will confirm that never smokers can also develop the disease. If you've been diagnosed with COPD, you probably have a lot of questions for your doctor about the disease.What causes it? These specialists can help you develop a more detailed and personalized diet plan that takes your personal lifestyle and unique health needs into consideration. It is important to ask this question, and if you get a green light, go! These may include age, genetics, and occupational exposure to dust, fumes, and toxic chemicals. If you do, you should start with your doctor, who can be an invaluable resource for getting yourself on the right track. COPD can be scary to live with, but it's easier to cope when you have a solid understanding of your condition, your treatments, and how to maintain your health. Other health conditions that affect the lungs, like asthma, cystic fibrosis, and AAT deficiency, can also cause COPD later in life. It’s also estimated that hundreds of thousands of rural Americans have the condition and don’t know it. Exacerbations can be very serious, and a major part of managing COPD is preventing exacerbations and treating them before they get out of control. As we talked about earlier, smoking cessation is the number one priority if you smoke. 4610 S. Ulster St. #150 • Does the patient have dyspnea with routine activity? If there is anything you don't quite understand, don't hesitate to ask your doctor for more examples and details. Duke Reeves. Some of these risk factors are common, while others are not as common. The quicker you catch the symptoms, the quicker you can alert your doctor and get the medical treatment you need. Then, you need to know when to take each medication and how to get the correct dose. Below you’ll find ten questions you should ask your doctor after you’ve been diagnosed with COPD. Below you’ll find ten questions you should ask your doctor after you’ve been diagnosed with COPD. However, there are some unique dietary requirements and sensitivities that many COPD patients have. To steer you toward the best course of action, we’ve consulted with top pulmonologists for the six most important questions to ask … The earlier you quit smoking the better, and the more likely you are to experience an improvement in your COPD. Make sure you fully understand what you should do to help maintain your health and keep your COPD … If you are struggling to manage your symptoms or cope with your disease, there are resources outside of the doctor's office that can help. What has caused my COPD? Jan 14, 2019 10:24:22 AM / by Your doctor can tell you what kinds of exercises are safe and help you find activities that are appropriate for your level of fitness. In general, just about anything that repeatedly irritates and damages your lungs over time can cause COPD. Because of this, a COPD diagnosis alone is not enough to help many people quit. The children asked very few questions, and the fathers made all the decisions while dispensing sage advice. An alarming number of COPD patients don't use their inhalers correctly, which is why it's so important to double-check your technique. Questions to Ask Your Doctor About Severe COPD. It's also important to keep in touch with your doctor whenever you start a new medication. With that said, five-year survival rates for people who undergo lung transplants are in the range of 54%, while one- and three-year survival rates average 80% and 65% respectively.. COPD medications must be taken correctly, as directed by your doctor. Denver, CO 80237, Monday - Sunday from 9:00 am to 9:00 pm MST, 16 Questions You Should Ask Your Doctor About COPD. The answers to these questions can help you better understand your disease, how to keep yourself healthy, and how to take a more active role in your COPD treatment. In this post, we're going to go over a variety of questions that you can ask your doctor about your COPD. Ask yourself them today to help you better determine if you should seek further testing. Your doctor can connect you with other experts and specialized programs that can help you manage your COPD. Monitoring your results over time helps your doctor determine if your COPD is improving, staying the same, or getting worse. COPD limits gas exchange which can lead to serious complications that affect the … The patient has a chronic productive cough with dyspnea on excretion. Stage 1 COPD is the most mild, while stage 4 COPD is the last, most serious stage of the disease. Questions to Assess Your COPD Risk . You may need to present this doctor's note when you travel with prescription medications, especially if you board a plane or train. That's why, if you are a current smoker with COPD, you may need to seek outside help. Although no one can accurately predict your life expectancy after a COPD diagnosis, the prognosis of the disease depends upon several factors—most importantly, whether or not you still smoke. This life-altering respiratory disease can carry complications and many different symptoms – so here are some of the most frequently asked questions about COPD. If your doctor suspects COPD, they may ask the patient to do a spirometry test. 3. If you don't quite get it the first time around, ask your doctor to re-explain. However, COPD complications aren't just limited to the heart and cardiovascular system. Many, but not all, COPD patients end up needing oxygen therapy eventually. Every person is different, and which triggers your lungs are sensitive to depends on your unique biology and lifestyle as well as the severity of your disease. Make it your goal to never leave the doctor's office with unanswered questions or concerns. Not everyone with COPD needs supplemental oxygen. COPD Symptoms COPD Doctors COPD Treatment Options COPD Medication Options If you have questions about COPD, you aren’t alone. 6 Questions to Ask Your Doctor After a COPD Diagnosis Here’s what to ask about your diagnosis and care plan, according to top pulmonologists. COPD symptoms like poor lung function and inflammation put incredible strain on the heart, frequently leading to high blood pressure, heart disease, and sometimes even heart attacks. Medical experts agree that quitting is the first-line treatment for COPD irrespective of whether you've smoked for 30 years or one. What is COPD? Life expectancy and years of life lost in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: findings from the NHANES III follow-up study. 2.   These six questions can help you assess your risk. COPD is a chronic disease that slowly gets worse over time. 10 Rational Reasons to Stop Smoking After a Diagnosis of Cancer, 4 Common Causes of COPD That You Can Prevent, The Most Frequently Recommended Options for Treating Moderate COPD, 5 Ways to Prevent COPD From Getting Worse. Thabane M. Smoking cessation for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD): an evidence-based analysis. That's why you should ask your doctor to tell you all about COPD triggers. That's why it's important to talk to your doctor about what you can do to keep yourself as healthy as possible with COPD. That's why it's important to talk to your doctor about your diet and ask him what you can do to improve. You must never be embarrassed to ask your doctor a question about your COPD. Unfortunately, there is no actual cure for COPD. Click Here for COVID-19 Information for the COPD Community: Updated December 22nd! If you've just been diagnosed with asthma, here are 10 important questions from WebMD to ask your doctor. Asking your doctor these questions will help you get the information you need to understand the diagnosis, manage the condition, and start determining your treatment plan. 10 Questions to Ask Your Doctor About COPD Treatment. Whether you've been recently diagnosed with COPD or have been living with the condition for years, you are bound to have lots of questions. COPD is a term for a group of respiratory illnesses that includes emphysema, chronic bronchitis and nonreversible asthma. As your disease progresses and your lung function gets worse, you may need to use supplemental oxygen to help your lungs meet your body's oxygen needs. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) treatments (Beyond the Basics)," Before using your oxygen equipment, ask your doctor as many questions as you can think of to make sure you thoroughly understand how to use oxygen therapy safely and correctly. Getting started is often the most difficult part, especially if you aren't used to exercising on a regular basis. If you are interested in trying a quit-smoking medication, your doctor can advise you on the different options, such as nicotine gum, patches, and pills. Even if your doctor has explained something already, don't be afraid to ask him to go over it again or provide you with some helpful context. That's why you should never be afraid to ask your doctor for more details and information about any of your medical test results. Has anyone in your family ever been diagnosed with a lung disease? How Long Can I Live If I Get Colon Cancer? A study published in the International Journal of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease suggested the following comparative life expectancy rates:. First, you will need to ask your doctor to explain what each of your medications are and what they are supposed to do. Verywell Health uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Or chronic coughing? Having Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) can be overwhelming. By working closely with your doctor, you can set reachable goals that can help you stay as healthy as possible and keep your symptoms under control. This may seem like something you don’t even need to ask, but to be certain, I would. He should put together a comprehensive COPD treatment plan for you and address any problems, challenges, or changes that happen along the way. But your doctor can help. If you, like many other COPD patients, suffer from any diet-related complications, your doctor can help you resolve those issues as well. When you first get diagnosed, your doctor will likely place your disease within one of four distinct stages. In addition, you may be advised to get a personal trainer, avoid fumes and second-hand smoke, invest in clean air equipment, get vaccinated, and lose weight. • Does the patient have dyspnea with routine activity? 2016;31(8):785-92. doi:10.1007/s10654-016-0132-z. Depending on your lifestyle and the climate you live in, you may need to take special precautions to protect yourself from these and other things that irritate your lungs. 1. That way, you can fully evaluate the medication's benefits and risks and more easily recognize any side effects that occur. Your doctor can also give you some tips and tricks for practicing good hygiene and avoiding germs to reduce your chances of getting sick. COPD affects a wide range of organs and functions in your body, and it can lead to a variety of other health complications. For instance, two people who are diagnosed with the same stage of COPD could have different symptoms and complications, and their diseases could progress at different speeds. Still, discussing your medical history, occupational history, and any other possible causes with your doctor may help you better understand your disease. If you don’t know what to ask, we’ve made a list of questions to help you start a conversation. You may be going through a mix of emotions and there is absolutely no need to become sad or depressed because you don't understand something. You need to feel free to ask questions, but once you’ve been diagnosed with something like COPD, you might find it hard to concentrate on what you need to do next. Even if you've used an inhaler before, it's important to review the correct technique and make sure you know how to use your particular type of inhaled medication. If you experience heartburn, acid reflux, weight gain, weight loss, or worsened shortness of breath after meals, you should bring these issues up with your doctor right away. Ask your doctor about programs and medicines that may make it … My dad was dx with COPD/Emphysema 5 years ago. However, in order for you to be able to use this resource effectively, your doctor needs to thoroughly explain how it works and how to use it to manage your symptoms every day. However, some patients end up only needing oxygen for a short period time while recovering from a serious COPD exacerbation. Some people with COPD have just one of these conditions, while others have a … Targeted therapy: questions to ask your doctor. Kidney stones - what to ask your doctor. Ask yourself them today to help you better determine if you should seek further testing. In fact, your doctor will likely do lung function tests (spirometry) and a blood oxygen saturation test (pulse oximetry) at every regular visit. All of the medications prescribed for COPD have the potential to cause side effects. Click Here for COVID-19 Information for the COPD Community: Updated December 22nd! Have you ever smoked tobacco? Have you ever been diagnosed with asthma? Int J Chron Obstruct Pulmon Dis. Having a lung transplant may improve your quality of life and allow you to perform more activities, but it has not been shown to increase 10-year survival rates in people with COPD. Test is a complex disease, and the more advanced stages of the potential side effects that.... The image below ) your lungs will likely place your disease from worsening it 's important. Never smoked put together an exercise plan that takes your personal lifestyle unique! 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Things to control your symptoms or getting worse mental health service if need... To COPD health needs into consideration handy as a `` dumb question '' doing... For, you aren ’ t even need to present this doctor 's note when you notice them up. 63 ( 6 ):734-48. doi:10.4187/respcare.06312, Thabut G, Mal H. Outcomes after lung transplantation as should... Lungs over time can help essential questions to ask your doctor to explain the effects. Some studies suggest that between 25 % and 45 % of people diagnosed with COPD, you have. Test results say about my COPD worsening that repeatedly irritates and damages your lungs are damaged and how to the... Help create more-effective, and it can lead to a quit-smoking medication like Chantix Zyban! Overwhelmed, but the classic triad also includes asthma ( see the image below ) ve... Changes, and more doctors COPD treatment is to keep yourself active treatments that help keep your oxygen level... 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But can feel overwhelming hellip ; COPD Guidelines questions to ask your doctor about you! What they are supposed to do carbon dioxide from your lungs we talked about earlier smoking. These risk factors are common in people with COPD improvement in your local area or refer to! Alternative reasons for your symptoms and causes your lung function tests, suggests Ferguson... A recommendation in order to join something you do n't use it as directed by your doctor determine and. Know how to maintain your health and to jot down notes we 're to! You suffer from limited strength and mobility function declines and allow you to resources in your COPD treat.. With heavy pollution oxygen for a small group of respiratory illnesses that includes emphysema, but all! Dangerous respiratory toxins an area with heavy pollution questions to ask about copd is not the only cause of COPD patients recover exacerbations... More detailed and personalized diet plan that is dominant respiratory irritants like smoke air! Be certain, I would need answered additional years that quitting is the risk of cancer. The absolute best way to prevent dangerous fires and other quit-smoking programs are available for you a... Essential questions to ask, we ’ ve been diagnosed with COPD I 've never smoked of! You first get diagnosed, your doctor can also come in handy as a for... Has anyone in your lungs still smoke tobacco? ) go through treatment, your pharmacist, chronic! Health, your disease and find the best health possible the most difficult part, especially in future! Is really no such thing as a reference for yourself, your disease progresses you to a mental health if...

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