i have a family member with copd, he is in an assisted living home thinking he is going to come home when hislegs gets stronger..the nurse there says he's not,, he is still smoking and trying to strengten his legs,,the nurse says the more he exerts himself he's putting more strain on his heart and doing more damage than good,,and that we can expect worsening as time goes by
It is very difficult to be specific because every person is affected so differently by chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). What can be said is that your family member will advance from one stage of COPD to the next stage at a faster rate as long as he continues to smoke. This will generally decrease his quality of life and his life expectancy. The most important thing that your family member can do to help himself is to quit smoking. It is not possible to say that this will stop his progression to the next stage of COPD, but it will slow down the rate of progression.
You may want to look at our Quit Smoking Topic Center at http://www.nationaljewish.org/topic/smoking_cessation.html for ways to help your family member to quit smoking. Also check with your family member
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