Saturday, October 27, 2007

Useful Information From This Week's COPD Survivors Newsletter

by Cecil Montgomery

Hundreds of home oxygen providers across California are implementing Disaster
Preparedness Plans as smoke, raging fires and mass power outages wreak havoc, leaving thousands of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)patients in need of
emergency respiratory assistance to access life-saving oxygen therapy.
COPD, a respiratory condition typically associated with acute lung diseases that obstruct airflow to the lungs and interfere with a patent's ability to breathe properly, is the 4th leading cause of death in the country. In California alone, more than 1.75 million people suffer from COPD.

Home oxygen providers took shifts throughout the past few nights to locate and speak with every patient in their jurisdiction, assess their individual situation and provide emergency support services to ensure their continuity of care -- whether in patients' homes or at an evacuation center. For many of the patients who remain at home during this crisis, widespread blackouts have left them without the use of their stationary oxygen concentrators, which generate the medically-pure oxygen they require from ambient room air.

I imagine most of you probably wonder why I posted this in the weekly newsletter since it has been all over the news. I will attempt to explain my reasoning.
I noticed that the article encouraged immediate evacuation for people with COPD having a priority. In addition, it also stated that oxygen providers were trying to contact all their patients. I don't believe I have seen this subject covered before. How does your oxygen provider know where to find you?
I would suggest, as I am going to do today,
contact the provider and give him a good idea of where you would evacuate to if an emergency were to occur. In this day and age we never know when it might be necessary. I would also recommend that you get a copy of your oxygen prescription and carry it in your pocket. If you were out of your local area it might be difficult to obtain oxygen without it. Another suggestion - I always carry an extra bottle in my truck, just in case.


I also wanted to bring to your attention a little known exerciser for the lungs. It is called the breather. I ordered one and it is really a great lung exerciser.
The main point of benefit is that the inhale and exhale settings can be set to your own level of breathing to start out with. I started on one and it is not much more than normal breathing. It also forces you to use diaphragm breathing in order to get
the full benefit of the exercise. It was designed and patented by a respiratory therapist and tested by a DR and a team of people for its effectiveness. It is patented and approved by the FDA. It sells for $20.00 and there is a shipping fee of $2.50. I have no monetary interest in the company but I am deeply impressed with the product. It can be obtained through the below sources.
PN Medical
Orlando Fl
Phone: 407-438-4487
FAX: 407-888-2795


This is a link to some great information on different med programs for assistance. It is broken down by state as well as by Federal programs. There is quite a bit available if you know where to look. I hope this is helpful for everyone.
Click Here