Doctor insights on:
Why Is Elevated Oxygen Dangerous For Emphysema Patients
Not usually: In the late stages of emphysema or copd, patients do not respond normally to stimuli that make normal patients breathe. They only keep breathing in response to low oxygen in their bloodstreams. If they are given too much oxygen, their systems think that they don't need to breathe and they can actually breathe less or stop breathing. This is a rare problem. Oxygen helps most emphysema patients. ...Read more
COPD may include chronic bronchitis, emphysema, or both. Chronic bronchitis is the production of increased mucus caused by inflammation. Bronchitis is considered chronic if you cough and produce excess mucus most days for three months in a year, two years in a row. Emphysema is a disease that damages the air sacs and/or the smallest breathing tubes in the lungs. ...Read more
I am COPD patient last 3 years. Now my spo2 has dropped to < 70 w/o external oxygen. Please advice?
Low blood oxygen: At the advanced stages of copd, the lungs do not perform their function well, oxygen has a harder time crossing into the blood stream. At this point, the body is not getting enough energy, the blood oxygen level is low. Raising the amount of inhaled oxygen offsets the problem, and prolongs life. Oxygen is used at the lowest amount that would achieve the goal. ...Read more
For what reason should patients with COPD be given low flow concentration (1-2l/min) supplemental oxygen?
Depends...: Oxygen is only prescribed when the oxygen level in the body is low and only in the lowest amount needed to maintain the oxygen level at an acceptable level. Oxygen must be carefully prescribed by a doctor with monitoring of the patient's oxygen levels because giving too much oxygen is harmful as is not giving enough! See your doctor if you think your oxygen level is low! ...Read more
COPD: COPD patients have a persistent state of low oxygen. They need to be monitored with yearly Pulmonary Function Tests with DLCO. Medical management with inhalers like combivent and dulera (formoterol and mometasone). Self management with home pulse OX. Also therapy for nicotine addiction if present. The stress of surgery often flares COPD depending how long and what anesthesia was used. You must be careful with giving O2 ...Read more
Yes and No: Patients with emphysema are at some risk for developing high carbon dioxide levels (hypercapnea) if given high doses of oxygen. The oxygen will displace the carbon dioxide off of the red blood cell resulting in higher blood levels (haldane effect). However, hypoxia (low oxygen) is more likely to kill a patient than hypercapnea (high co2) so using high dose oxygen may be needed. ...Read more
The destruction in the lung tissue from emphysema makes the oxygen harder to cross into the blood because there is less tissue surface left.
With less air sacs to participate in gas exchange, it is harder for oxygen to cross into the blood. Does that make sense?
That's why people should stop smoking. ...Read more
Is it harder for people with emphysema to get enough oxygen while they're under general anesthesia?
Not usually: Room air contains only 21% oxygen. When a patient is under general anesthesia, we can increase the amount of oxygen breathed to 100% if necessary. So even with emphysema, it is rare to have problems receiving enough oxygen. However, patients with emphysema will have a harder time breathing on their own and recovering after surgery and general anesthesia. ...Read more
I am on supplemental oxygen at night. Can one predict how soon I will need oxygen 24/7? I have severe emphysema.
O2: Really no way to predict it other than to say not smoking and avoiding exposure to smoke will certainly slow that progression down. ...Read more
Portable oxygen concentrator advice/comparison for overseas purchase to assist my father who has severe emphysema?
Oxygen concentrator: The best place to look is on E-bay but have his physician tell him what liter flow to use based on his disease ...Read more
Bad: Lack of oxygen in emphysema is general and not localized to one part of the body. Most critical and sensitive parts are brain and heart. If there is additional poor circulation to the legs, lack of oxygen will contribute to leg cramps, leg pain, nerve damage, poor wound healing and gangrene. ...Read more
Carefully!: Advanced emphysema and respiratory distress are different. Both may require supplemental oxygen. Respiratory distress may result from many causes other than emphysema and almost always requires extra o2. Pts with severe emphysema or COPD rarely may slow or stop breathing with extra o2 because it takes away their urge to breathe. O2 must be given with extra caution to those pts. ...Read more
My mom has emphysema and COPD and is on oxygen... Her nose constantly runs and it's always very cold what can we do to stop the drainage...?
Oxygen delivery: Lack of oxygen to any part of the body from any cause may cause ischemia. This causes the cells to do their work via alternate pathways. This causes Lactic Acid buildup pain and eventually cell death. Claudication is a term you may have heard when there is poor circulation to the legs causing pain. The poor circulation reduces the amount of oxygen delivered. ...Read more
What is the best natural treatment for Mid Sept emphysema, an RS heart failure I don't have oxygen or bronchodilators, doc refused saying they won't work?
Treatment...: Typically, treatment for COPD begins with bronchodilator and possibly steroid inhalers as well as oxygen therapy if the oxygen level is low. Smoking cessation is also pursued if the patient still smokes in order to decrease airway inflammation and thus slow disease progression. ...Read more
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