The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

Sisters Complete Pulmonary Rehab In Carthage

Recently sisters, Jan Faulkner and Beverly "Kay" Faulkner went through pulmonary rehab treatments at Midwest Family Medical Care in Carthage Illinois.

Jan and Kay were both diagnosed with COPD and have dealt with symptoms for over 5 years. COPD is an umbrella term used to describe Emphysema and Chronic Bronchitis. It is a serious disease that affects the way the lungs work and makes breathing very difficult.

"Before going through the rehab program," Jan said, " I would walk up the stairs and turn and look back to see if my breath was going to catch up to me." "I suffered with breathing difficulties for about 5 years. I really didn't think there was anything to do except take medications and they were not really making a big difference," adds Jan.

"Living with COPD can be scary; you never know if you are going to be able to catch your breath," says Kay. "I have dealt with breathing problems for over 5 years and some of the simplest tasks are difficult with COPD. It is frustrating to not be able to go grocery shopping, take the trash out or simply take a walk without worrying if you are going to be able to breathe. Last year my sister and I bought bicycles thinking that we would love to ride together, but found that we could sometimes only ride to the corner before we would have to quit. COPD is life changing, it causes you to lose your independence," said Kay.

On a routine visit with Dr. Davis, it was recommended that Kay go through a pulmonary rehab program. After her visit she encouraged her sister Jan to follow suit and go see Dr. Davis also. So the two sisters headed to rehab together.

Pulmonary rehabilitation involves a number of healthcare providers {physician, licensed therapists and nurses} working together as a unit to help improve the lives of those with breathing problems. The program focuses on exercise conditioning, endurance training, education and emotional support for the patient. Tyler Hall registered pulmonary rehab therapist, works with patients to set up an individual program that best suits the patient.

"This program gives the patients of Hancock County and surroundings who suffer from the effects of COPD a rare opportunity to improve upon their quality of life," says Dr. Kurt Davis. "If they are dissatisfied with their own ability to do things that once were simple tasks because of a recent hospitalization or worsening of their pulmonary disease, they shouldn't contemplate it any further and should involve themselves in a program that can better their longevity and increase their independence and improved conditioning," Davis adds. "We want our patients to LIVE their lives to the fullest, not just get one day older and one day weaker from these diseases."

"It was such an eye opener for me to find out that building certain muscles would help my breathing," says Jan. Both Jan and Kay encourage anyone with breathing difficulties to talk to Tyler about the program. "You have nothing to lose," says Kay, "I wish I had done it sooner."

Kay says she can now ride her bicycle at least six blocks or more, and besides an inhaler for emergencies, she is off all COPD medications. Jan says she no longer has to look behind her, for her breath, after she climbs the stairs now.

For more information about the pulmonary rehab program call Tyler Hall at 217-357-6535