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Treatment of Emphysema

Emphysema Treatment

The most essential step in any treatment plan for smokers with emphysema is to stop smoking immediately; it's the only way to stop the damage to your lungs from becoming progressively worse over time. But quitting smoking is rarely easy, and people often need the help of a comprehensive smoking cessation plan, which may include:

Other emphysema treatments, which focus on relieving symptoms and preventing emphysema complications, include:

Doctors examination of lung disease patients x-ray The lung surgery received renewed attention 40-yrs later when the results of a large clinical trial called the National Emphysema Treatment Trial showed that LVRS could improve the lung function of certain people with severe emphysema.

Those who benefited had emphysema in the upper lobes of their lungs and a low exercise capacity even after undergoing several weeks of pulmonary rehabilitation. People who didn't have emphysema in the upper lobes of their lungs and who had a greater exercise capacity after a program of pulmonary rehabilitation did not respond well to the surgery.

For those who were helped, improvement was greatest the first six-months after the procedure. After that, lung function gradually declined. People began having more difficulty breathing, and performance in the pulmonary function tests decreased. By the 2-year mark, the lung function in many people was about the same as it was before surgery. On the other hand, eligible people who didn't have LVRS declined continuously over the two-year period. If you have severe emphysema and think you may be a candidate for LVRS, discuss the risks and benefits of the operation with your doctor. (Emphysema website editor's note: Surgeons are performing surgery for lung cancer and exploratory surgery regarding emphysema and other lung disease in the operating room live more and more in their quest for better and more lung disease treatment options.

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Quick Tips for Living with Emphysema

Doctors can help persons with emphysema live more comfortably with their disease. The goal of treatment is to provide relief of symptoms and prevent progression of the disease with a minimum of side effects. The doctor's advice and treatment may include:

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