Do others who have COPD suffer with extreme fatigue?

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I have COPD and over a period of 6 mths my energy levels are extremly low resulting in me have very little energy to do the simpliest of tasks, I was wondering if others suffer with this also.

 

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  • Posted

    Unfortunately this is almost universal with COPD, depending on what stage you've reached.     If your energy levels have dropped over 6 months, have you had a spirometry test recently to check your lung function?     You don't say what medication you're using and whether you've been to rehab to learn breathing techniques:: both these factors can make an enormous difference to energy levels.

    The hardest thing I learned in rehab over 3 years ago when first diagnosed was that you can't "soldier on" with COPD and need to learn to adjust to varying energy levels, which I didn't find at all easy.

    I'd suggest you talk to your doctor or pulmonary nurse about your low energy levels

     

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  • Posted

    Hi Yvonnemarie!   

    Yes you can have extreme fatigue I did myself & am at stage 2 but I was also very aneamic I had a blood test done that showed the aneamia also my blood pressure was high I  have copd confirmed by spirometry & x-ray plus me thyroid levels were very low which I've had from childhood but copd can cause a lot of ailiments maybe effects some more than others as some people react differently & some  have similar & some the same symptoms! Also you could but not definately be low in vitamin D3 do you also suffer from joint pain or muscular or both pains these are just some of the conditions you might but might not have I would still see your your doctor as jude65855 suggested! i wish you well & hope you regain back your energy some energy atleast' as it's not easy living with copd! xPlease let us know how you get on!xx   

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  • Posted

    Hello Yvonnemarie

    Fatigue is very common with COPD because your lungs are not able to oxygenate your body like they normally should.

    If you are ensuring your medications are being taken as directed as that is very important. Please ask a nurse to review these medications and the proper manner in which to take them.

    The other very very very important part of managing COPD, as well as the fatigue that is encountered, is exercise.  One could ask how on earth am I supposed to do that when I have no energy, but the truth is, your body will require less oxygen,less effort , feel more alive and be able to tolerate more activity if you exercise and gain some muscle.

    Please ask your physician or nurse, to refer you to a physiotherapist or a breathing clinic who will help you to learn what you must do to slow down your COPD and to also gain strength and stamina.

    Exercise is THE most important effort you can make for yourself.

    I do not know if you have a 'chest' or 'COPD clinic" or "breathing rehab' program near to you, but that would be ideal.

    If you are experiencing shortness of breath to a degree that hinders your activity & exercise, you can use your 'rescue' inhaler pre emptively about ten minutes before and that will ease your breathing before you exercise.

    If getting activity in by walking outdoors, remember to loosely covering your nose and mouth to keep any cold air away as this will also hinder your breathing.

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  • Posted

    Thank you for your valuable information. I am struggling to exercise at this present time due to waiting for  surgery for a knee repair. I have torn the ligaments behind  the knee cap. I will certainly ask for a medication review to see if a change in medication may help.

    Once again, thaks for your quick response to my question.

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    • Posted

      Breathing exercises are still possible for you:  as suggested by others, find a rehab group or pulumonary physio or find exercises on the internet.   I can promise you it will be worth it even though it will be hard at first
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    • Posted

      All the best Yvonnemarie

      Let us know how you make out.

      And even though you cannot do well with that sore knee right now, there are exercises that you can do while sitting that will help build muscles.

      Look for what is called an "exercise band" ~ your local physiotherapist will know what it is..there are many many exercises you can do with it and it will help you.

      Look on the internet and you can find videos with exercise bands...but take advisement from your therapist as to what you should do and are allowed to do so that you do not injure yourself.

      Let us know how things go!  Don't let yourself get down hearted!!

      You CAN get stronger and with proper medication and proper use of your inhalers, you will get there!!

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  • Posted

    Hi Yvonnemarie, I was very very tired all the time for the first 9 months, exhausted with slightest movement.  But once the right medicine was achieved and I started to exercise and attended pulmonary rehabilitation the tiredness passed.

    The trouble is during the time of inactivity due to exhaustion and not being able to breathe well (initially only prescribed ventolin) I deconditioned quite quickly, the less you do the less you are able to do.  After I was prescribed the steroid inhaler and a long acting bronchodilater breathing began to improve and I was able to do more.  The little bit more I could do each day helped overcome the tiredness.

    I attended PR and there were times I had to drag myself there but it paid off and I completed the course, continued on another 6 weeks exercise course, and thereafter have been exercising since.  It takes time over years for fitness to steadily improve, breathing and stamina improve. I was able to do more and tiredness was more manageable.

    12 years on I still get breathless and I still get tired but I can do so much more than in those first few years.  So my advice to anyone would be do the PR course keep up the exercise and over time / years you will see that the effort pays off (providing of course if you have also stopped smoking and are eating for health).

     

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  • Posted

    Hi I do.  My lung function is in the mid 70's and I have asthma and copd.  I am 61.   I find I have little energy and often feel very tired.  I feel as though I shouldn't with my levels but I do.  I emphasise with you.  x
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  • Posted

    Hi I am an ex British citizen I live in the States now at age 62 I was tested and dignoised with Alpha One syndrome, its a genetic problem that presenst as COPD and in Britain they don't treat or even test for it. It wears you down because you can't get enough air in your lungs so you don't get oxygen into your blood. I use to receive a blood donation which infused me with a protein that we are lacking that protects the lungs, Britain doesn't do this because its too expensive they don't even test people they just say its copd. I survive on inhalers and even a nebuliser when I get bad usually during the cold winter months. I cover my mouth to keep the cold air out with a scarf. They say if it worsens you can receive oxygen, I am not at that point yet, my lung dr. said my lung fuction is at 40%, do you know what your lung fuction is at? I'm not sure how well the NHS take care of lung patients over there. My sister also has this as its in our family smoking of course makes it worse doesn't really strike people until they reach their 60's .The test she took you can do your self at home, you just put your blood on a paper they give you and then send it back to the home office of Alpha one headquarters which is based in Florida, the test is free so go to there web site, Alpha one foundation, google it, I how this helps
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    • Posted

      Alpha 1 is tested for in UK, especially when the person is of a younger age and other members in the family have it.

      Its a simple blood test should any one want to ask there consultant or GP for it.

      More information can be found at:

      https://www.blf.org.uk/Page/Alpha-1-antitrypsin-deficiency-A1A

      http://www.alpha1.org.uk/

      http://www.rbht.nhs.uk/research/our-research/nihr-respiratory-rare-diseases-translational-research-collaboration/alpha-1-antitrypsin-deficiency-aat/

      http://www.alpha1awareness.org.uk/links/publications/diagnosis-treatment/

      Patient UK information:

       https://patient.info/doctor/alpha-1-antitrypsin-deficiency

       

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    • Posted

      Really, my sister asked her GP and he/she wasn't interested in pursuing it, and why not older people? usually doesn't present until your older as it takes years for the destruction to show up. I was told they will not do the prolistin treatments because they say it isn't proven to help, well it does help, I have a better quality of life when I am on than without. A factor in the U.K. is, it costs too much NHS doesn't want to pay for it.
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    • Posted

      Hi I agree to a large extent with Vee.   It is tested for in the UK but often it is only if a younger person than usual (ie under about 40) has copd.  This is because Alpha1 Deficiency usually shows itself at a younger age than normal copd.  If you are diagnosed later I am not sure it makes much difference whether you have Alpha 1 or just copd.   I could be wrong on that though.... x
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    • Posted

      Well I was tested for it at age 62 and they said I was what they refer to as a MZ which means I got it from one parent I know people that got it from both and are called ZZ they lungs are at 25% and on oxygen at night, mine are at 40% , apparently whether you smoked or not it acts like you did because you end up with COPD . My lung Dr. felt I was having more than usual breathing problems for my age so that's why I was tested and the fact that I was British. many northern Europeans have it, supposenly from the vikings centuries ago. I was told it takes years to show up usually past age 50 so I'm suprised by what you said about younger people or children. I shall have to ask my Dr. next time I see him.
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    • Posted

      Hi I wonder if you have had it for many years and it was not picked up until you were older?  Is this a possiblity? 

      We have guidelines here called the NICE Guidelines.  I googled those and it says if anyone under a certain age (can't remember the age) has symptoms of copd always check for Alpha 1.   It is also an indictator of this if someone has never smoked or been subjected to a lot of second hand smoke. 

      I am on another site here and have never heard of anyone being diagnosed with it in their 50's and 60's but maybe that is because doctors don't generally check for it later in life here?   I have heard of several folk who were diagnosed with it later in life but had already had it for many years.   I would be interested to know what your doctor says. x

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