Pulmonary Rehabilitation(PR) or Pulmonary Rehab is a program that includes exercise training, health education and breathing techniques for people with lung conditions (such as asthma or COPD) and lung problems due to other conditions.
Related article: What is COPD?
PR can help you breathe easier and improve your quality of life for certain lung conditions such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), asthma, pulmonary hypertension and cystic fibrosis (CF). It can also improve daily life for people who have scoliosis or other heath problems that impact lung function. PR can also be of benefit to people before and after surgery for a lung transplant or lung cancer.
PR can help you gain strength, making it easier to manage routine actives, work and social outings that you enjoy. In turn this can help you battle symptoms of anxiety and depression that are associated with your disease.
PR usually happens in the hospital or the clinic, occasionally you may learn physical therapy or breathing exercises to do at home. You may also use activity monitors or smartphone based lessons and monitoring. Your program will be designed by your team of healthcare providers based on your needs.
PR has very few risks. Rarely, physical activity during the program can cause problems for a patient such as injuries. If you are prone to injury or have a past injury you should inform your care team.
Your health care team will include doctors, nurses, respiratory therapists, physical and occupational therapists, dietitians and psychologists.
To design your pulmonary rehabilitation plan, your healthcare team may do a series of tests, such as pulmonary function testing and fitness testing.
Related article: What is Spirometry?
Typically, your program will cover the following topics . Each of these will be personalised to you by your care team and will be adjusted to you as you progress through the program.
PR programs are usually two or three weekly sessions lasting a few weeks or months. At the end of the program you will be assessed for change over the course of the program. Pulmonary Rehabilitation gives you the best results if you continue to do the exercises and use the skills you learn long after you’ve completed the program. The staff will design a long-term plan for you – be sure to follow it.
After PR users have experienced few symptoms, like less cough and less shortness of breath. Users have reported improvements in quality of life and more positive feelings about their conditions. One report shows that people who completed pulmonary rehab spent on average 5 days less in hospital than those who did not in the proceeding 180 days. Typically, patients say they have improved ability to exercise and are more knowledgeable on how to manage their condition.
Most of all PR builds confidence for patients and equips them with tools needed to combat their condition.
PR in Canada - https://www.lung.ca/search/node/pulmonary%20rehab