global support for those suffering with COPD

  COPD International     Your International Support Network.

You can learn to control this disease, instead of letting it control you!





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Have you just heard the words

"You have COPD"   

With those words, often there is a rush of confusion, panic and a sense of loss of control over one's life. 

 For many, the first thoughts and questions center around the questions of longevity. 

The reality of it is:

COPD Is Not a Death Sentence!

Those positive words of wisdom, written by the late Bill Horden,
COPD patient, advocate and writer,
have given thousands the hope that they could not only live with COPD,
but live well. 

     COPD, though considered a chronic, debilitating and sometimes fatal disease, can be managed, controlled and slowed down. It is mostly up to you. .You can lead a good and long life, with a great deal of quality and joy left even after that diagnosis.  Many of our volunteers have over 20 years of experience in dealing with COPD.  The most important factors contributing to a longer and healthier lifestyle include, but are not limited to:


Early accurate detection
Pulmonary Function Test (Spirometry) is the primary diagnostic tool
All COPD patients should also be tested for Alpha 1


Find a knowledgeable healthcare provider -  preferably a pulmonary specialist
You and your healthcare providers need to work together as a team


Stop smoking
This is considered the single most important step in your treatment program


Follow your medication regimen faithfully - Even though you are feeling "fine" for periods of time, it is important to continue to take the prescribed medicines.  Many are actually maintenance medications, designed to stabilize your COPD.


Diet and food preparation are special problems for those of us who have COPD
Bill Horden's  An SOB In The Kitchen" is a survivorís guide through a healthy kitchen


Exercise regularly
    Avoid the downward spiral of getting short of breath, so you do less ---- doing less allows your physical condition to deteriorate which means less muscle efficiency with the limited oxygen --- so you  get short of breath faster,  which makes you do less.  On and on that downward spiral continues - you then are able to do less and less --- on and on till you can't do much of anything. You are almost completely immobile and maybe even bed ridden.
Pulmonary Rehab (referral needed by your doctor)
Reduces respiratory symptoms (shortness of breath)
Improves your mental and emotional outlook
Educates you about your disease so you can better deal with its variables
Increases your stamina with exercise
Enhances your ability to perform activities of daily living
Continue a maintenance exercise program after rehab to avoid deconditioning


Join a support group for persons with COPD
There may be a local area group that meets monthly
Join or visit one of the online support groups
Interactive support provides a wealth of experience from COPD patients
Often they have already dealt with many of your fears


Educate yourself about every aspect of your disease
Including its related problems, medicines and procedures


Keep accurate notes about your condition, including copies of all your tests


Take infection prevention steps to limit exacerbations which can lead to additional lung damage
Many doctors will prescribe antibiotics to keep on hand at home
      ◙ Learn under what circumstances to immediately begin taking these
     ◙ Be sure to get Flu and Pneumonia shots

You can learn to control COPD instead of letting COPD control you!


Get additional help, guidance and support:

This chat is held in the Main chat Room at  Full chat schedule - Click here

If you are a mIRC or Web TV user, the room is #copd

Full chat schedule - Click here


Suggested additional reading:

From the COPD-International Library - - - The Bill Horden Wing - features the writings of the COPD Advocate.  Best known for the COPD Survival Guide, this pioneer of COPD Advocacy set the standards for providing today's support and information
      A COPD Survival Guide by Bill Horden

     An SOB In The Kitchen by Bill Horden -  a survivorís guide through a healthy kitchen

From the COPD-International Library - - - Personal experiences section
      COPD is not a death sentence -- by Susie Bowers is an article that was published in the Lancet   (September 4, 2004) outlining her feelings as she dealt with the diagnosis of COPD.

      Fishing With Emphysema -- by Danny Spurrier -- This story of a fishing addict with COPD traces the transitions and attitude adjustments that can be made to allow a COPDer to continue to do the thing he loves the most.

      The Fork in the Road - by CG - Life is full of choices and decisions - but those of us with this disease called COPD have extra ones to confront us. This article is based on speaker notes to groups.

From the COPD-International Library - - - Guest articles section
Sick Lungs Don't Show - adapted from a 1998 EFFORTS Brochure,  by Edna Fiore.

      Dear Family -  "An Open Letter to Family Members from Your COPD Person" written by Jo-Von Tucker is a perfect reflection of the thoughts and emotions of a family member with COPD.

From the COPD-International Library - - - checklists
A list of questions for you to ask your doctor.
list of questions

       A checklist to help you remember to cover all the symptoms when you see your doctor.

From the COPD-International Library - - - main library section
The stages of COPD
The stages of COPD
The Main library index links to hundreds of articles on COPD and related conditions

From the COPD-International front page links
The welcome letter with a guide to some of the features of the website
The welcome letter

Last modified: March 07, 2013

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