COPD: Can it be reversed?

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My medical acquaintances, including GPs, say COPD cannot be beaten.

I don't necessarily disagree but am certainly working on it. The internet has a fair amount of literature claiming success. Some sites seem to require payment. However, my only method -- excluding medication -- is to put various practical measures to the test, and report on them accordingly. (I have not written for several months.) What works for me might not be applicable to others for reasons of age, gender and accompanying complications.

Listing them is a good starting point:

Age, 74;  gender, male;  complications, BHP (prostate handicap is ongoing), bilateral pulmonary emboli (recurrence of PE condition in Oct 2015. Warfarin is now a daily requiremeni.) The repeat PE episode put me in hospital a second time. As a consequence I have had to withdraw from hands-on activities with the grandchildren. Their colds during autumn/winter months are lethal. I regard it, together with unnecessary communication with people, as a prerequisite when trying to avoid chest infections.

Individual diet is a very important consideration, and everyone has their own preferences. Provided the choices are healthy and nourishing, I do not regard the subject as critical.  In my case food consumption is possibly double that of most because of energy used up each day. I have only just recovered the 6 kg lost from the October infection.

Another past factor has been a disgusting smoking habit discontinued a couple of years ago. Smoking 7 - 10 cigarettes daily for 52 years had obvious consequences. At age 17 the problem began immediately every morning on the commute up to London. South Western trains seldom had open carriage windows in the 1960s. The only counter-balance was a great deal of physical exercise early on and doing circa40 miles every week on the road thereafter. (I mention this as it might have a bearing on the recovery now. And is something for others to consider.)

My findings (below) are not going to fit the bill for everyone. After gasping/SoB for more than a year, I attempt to put a positive spin on this degenerative and depressing condition.

First, I have ceased using Spiriva 18 mg. Until recently, my exercise regimen was merely 60 - 90 minutes whenever possible during the week. I have increased the tempo to a minimum of 1 x 2 hours and 1 x 3 hours over a weekend. It is additional to all physical output during weekdays. It had become clear that 3 - 5 miles was inadequate. At least one 10-miler was required.

The bottom line is lung capacity is greatly improved, and I shall update if/when I can resume running again.

I am very aware that climatic factors in various places such as e.g. central Australia, Arizona/Colorado, Vancouver Island are difficult for several months of the year, viz. 40C and -25C. Tackling COPD outdoors in such conditions is extremely hazardous.

 

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  • Posted

    Hi David, the sites I have visited have all said you cant reverse the damage already done and have saidd it is progressive. I like you dont accept this. I was diagnosed two and a half years ago, I immediately stopped smoking and have had quite a few chest infections but not recently. I am on Spiriva am and Surdupla am and pm, I used to need ventalin a few times a day but not for the past 6 mnths. I try and walk every day and have lost over a stone in weight. I believe that by being positive, eating a healthy diet and exercising as often as possible I can keep this horrible affliction. X from getting any worse
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  • Posted

    Hi David

    The damage your COPD up to date can not be repaired, as far as I can ascertain.

    Its unfortunate but that's how it issad,

     Saying that, you can stop it progressing and at least feeling alot better. Seems like that is what you are doing, so good on youcheesygrin

    All the best, and keep fighting.

    Kev  (UK).

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  • Posted

    Hi copd is a progressive disease and despite unproven claims it still is.   It might be curable  one day in the future but it currently isn't now.  .

    You can do a lot with a healthy lifestyle to hold it steady and even increase your lung function a bit but you are not going to get a cure with the current knowledge.  Good luck though.  x

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  • Posted

    I have found acupuncture and a flu jab  for unknown chest infections [weakness] !This  could be pulmonary hypertension, as heart is  not showing damage . Even though have endured cardiac arrest revived with angioplasty the angina factor is not acknowledged even though still given GTN & ranitidine  for temporary spasms  originally diagnosed as hiatus hernia   .
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  • Posted

    Update: I can understand scepticism over any claims made by me. And I also accept there are variables in the condition each of us has. However, I feel it important to record results from time to time.

    After slipping back following two very wet days, when it was difficult to accomplish much outside, I completed a fairly brisk 14-mile circuit. Only slight difficulty was felt on steepish inclines. It is significant that the distance was about 3 - 4 miles longer than previous attempts.

    Asking others to make comparisons is difficult. First there will be age differences. Also, doing heavy work and pushing wheelbarrows around on a regular basis is unlikely in most cases. Nevertheless I have noted and felt improvement. My argument in an effort to repair lung damage is based on improved lung function when training for 28- and 35-mile marathons. It therefore seems logical to me that airways(sic) can recover to some extent. Granted, having nearly reached 74, I am entering unknown territory.

    I would welcome anyone else's findings.

    (Many of us would never have joined this forum if it were not for the wretched fags.)   

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    • Posted

      What is happening when you exercise regularly is that the oxygen level in your blood is being used more efficiently.   You therefore need less oxygen in your body to move it.  .  This is great.

      It is not however your lungs repairing themselves but making the most of the lung function you have.  There is a difference.   You can improve your lung function quite a lot through exercise though.   But like I said it is because your oxygen is being used more efficiency.   Reversal of damage to the airways is not possible as yet.  It will be one day but maybe not in our lifetimes.  x

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