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Dr. Phil, MD
Dr. Phil, MD, Medical Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 55466
Experience:  Medical Doctor Trained at a Top Academic Institution
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I am 79 years old with COPD & Asthma. I have had two

Customer Question

I am 79 years old with COPD & Asthma. I have had two incidences of pulmonary embolism and have just recovered from pneumonia. I am still having a problem sometimes of getting enough breath. I do use oxygen at night, but do not need it during the day. I want to exercise, but find it taxing and even walking, my legs start to burn.
I want to sing and find I also do not have capacity for that. I have just purchased a Lung Boost distributed by Choice Med. It is supposed to strengthen respiratory muscles for both inhalation and exhalation, which will increase the ability to exercise and increase athletic ability.
Am I too old and with the conditions I have, am I just hoping for more than can be achieved?
Thank you in advance for your help.LB
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. David replied 1 year ago.

This is Dr. David

best thing to do is to get into a cardiopulmonary rehabilitation program at your hospital

many hospitals have them.

you can exercise under supervision of a exercise trainer who can monitor your oxygen status and blood pressure levels

there are other exercises you can do besides walking which can help strengthen your muscles.

you can sit on a reclined exercise bike.

you can do upper body arm exercises.

taking regular deep breaths can help expand your lungs and help you have more lung volume.

I hope you no longer smoke

prior smoking history often will cause COPD and asthma and these will take away your ability to sing or exercise.

let me know if you have questions

Expert:  DrRussMD replied 1 year ago.


To answer your question that you asked: no, this is not a matter of being too old, and improvement is possible. How much you can improve is a different issue.

This is a different expert. I am a double board certified clinical doctor doctor. I have been responsible for pulmonary and heart patients, beginning to end, for over 20 years.

to answer this question accurately, I need some test results.

Can you put in your pulmonary function test results.

Have you had an echo cardiogram: please put in the report.

These assessments must be done to answer your question of how much you can improve

your abilities.

[Find me in medical anytime by request, as you might have future questions.]

And, why the Pulmonary embolisms?

The underlying cause here needs to be delineated as well.

You should not exercise at all until that is explained, where are the clots coming from. Are you on blood thinners?

If they are from your legs or pelvis, this needs to be addressed first.

Finally, do not start using the lung boost until cleared by your doctor. This is an aerobic training program and should be supervised.

Please click a positive rating on the rating scale for Dr. Thomas.

Please let me know your test results.

Expert:  Dr. Phil, MD replied 1 year ago.

There are a lot of possibilities here.

1)this could be a cardiac issue and not even lung related

2)you could have chronic thromboembolic disease

I would get yourself into a pulmonary clinic at a large university hospital for a comprehensive exam