Patient Education

It plays an important role in the following:
  • Increasing patient’s knowledge & understanding of the disease
  • Improving skills in symptom recognition, breathing & physical exercise, medication use including proper technique & environmental modification
    • Important to note that adherence to inhaled medications has been associated w/ reduced risk of death & hospital admission due to COPD exacerbations
    • Measures must be taken to reduce total personal exposure to tobacco smoke, occupational dusts & chemicals & air pollutants
  • Improving attitude toward nutrition & exercise, smoking cessation, quality of life factors & coping skills (eg relaxation techniques, stress management)
  • Improving patient responses to exacerbations
  • Initiating discussions about end-of-life issues including advance directives
Smoking Cessation
  • Smoking cessation is the single most effective & cost effective method to reduce the risk of developing COPD & to stop its progression
    • Counseling may be employed to aid patient
    • Pharmacotherapies to aid smoking cessation eg Nicotine preparations, Bupropion & Nortriptyline may be considered (See Smoking Cessation Disease Management Chart)