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Published on February 07, 2014

Pulmonary rehabilitation in Philadelphia at Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital

COPD treatment and more at Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital’s Pulmonary Rehab program.

At the Sister Marie Lenahan Wellness Center on the Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital campus, patients with COPD and other chronic lung illnesses are getting stronger and smarter, thanks to Exercise Physiologist Gloria Fairconeture and the team in the pulmonary rehab program. The program was established to help patients who suffer from shortness of breath and associated problems improve their exercise capacity while reducing anxiety, depression and hospitalizations.

Many people with COPD and other respiratory diseases think there’s nothing they can do to improve their situation,” says Gloria. “That’s just not the case. Through education and a carefully monitored exercise program, we teach them how to manage their disease and improve their quality of life.”

Family physicians and pulmonologists refer patients, who are further evaluated by the medical director, Michael Korman, MD, and respiratory specialists before beginning an individualized exercise program. Participants engage in aerobic exercise as well as resistance exercise. Therapists continuously monitor blood pressure, heart rate and blood oxygen levels.
Among the many helpful techniques that pulmonary rehab staff teaches are those that build confidence. “Being short of breath causes fear, and fear in turn makes breathing even more difficult,” says Gloria. “We teach breathing techniques that help patients.”

The result? Patients who are assured they can control their situation have confidence to purse a more active lifestyle.

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