Looking After Your Lungs in Oxfordshire – Pulmonary Rehabilitation Programme

[Diana] I had chase after my grandson one
day he was two and a bit and he ran away from me in the shopping centre a two years and
a bit child and I could not catch him and he was heading towards the door which led
out onto the canal and I thought my God I’ve got to do something about this so I went to
see my doctor because I used to be a smoker so I was coughing a lot and then my doctor
investigated and it is now four years ago now that it really started to get bad I said
I want to try and get fit again and within a matter of weeks I got the appointment. [Laura] So if you came to see me and you had
a lung problem like COPD emphysema or bronchitis we’d have a talk about how you are getting
on with your breathing and if you said that you were struggling with getting breathless
or finding day to day activities a bit difficult then we’d start to talk about whether you’d
like to take part in a program like Pulmonary Rehab and it might be that you can walk at
your own pace but have to stop every now and then or it might be that you walking with
the friends but you just can’t keep up with them but that’s the kind of level when we
know that patients will really benefit from the course like this Pulmonary Rehab Programme
it’s really easy to get you onto the Pulmonary Rehab Programme it’s a referral form that
I can complete or a practice nurse can complete with just a bit of basic information about
you so about your health and any other problems that you might have or aches and pains and
the reason is that when you go along to the course the physic will know about you and
they will help create exercise programs that are specific to you and that you’ll be able
to manage [Rachel] we run the courses all over Oxfordshire
so there is bound to be one close to where you live we do this so that people can get
to us and get to know the facilities they are available to them in their local town
the great thing is is that it is totally free we pay for your use the gym all you have to
do is turn up so we make sure that the exercises are at a suitable level for each person by
assessing everybody individually before we start that means we know if somebodies got
arthritis in their knees for example we can adapt the exercises so that we are not going
to upset any other problems that you’ve got going on and that we make sure that you’ll
get the best from the course [Diana] I was worried that I’d be able to
do anything really because i hadn’t exercised for such a long time I was starting to think
oh my god I’m not going to be able to do anything so I thought give it a go girl and everything
was very laid-back you weren’t pressured into doing anything and the physios were absolutely
brilliant they put everybody at their ease and they were superb really I can’t praise
them enough you can start off with the lightest of weights just a little kilo weight in each
hand and you can still lift those you just graduate and do your best really – it’s fantastic
it’s a really good thing it gets you back to fitness they’re very sociable we have a
laugh we are all in the same boat we’ve all got this lung disease and we’re there and
we do our best and that’s all we can do really but it certainly made me feel alot better
in myself and my self esteem the people in the group and on the course where all the
same we’ve all got our battle to do and a lot of us to winning it
[Rachel] So there’s two separate components to the course the first part being the exercise
the second half we spend having discussions and education sessions about how you can look
after yourself with your lung condition we cover topics such as relaxation and the way
to manage anxiety we talk about what your lung condition is and how you can look after
your lungs better we get the respiratory nurses to come and talk to us about how the inhalers
that you might have work and the dietician also comes along to talk about little things
that you can do to eat better to help with your lung condition
[Laura] The Pulmonary Rehab Course is really important it’s not an afterthought or it’s
not an extra to add in it’s a key part of looking after your lungs it’s just the same
as taking inhalers it should form part of the treatment for you and it makes a real
difference [Diana] its made me get up get out and do
things I can certainly walk further now than I could before not saying I can jog or run
but I can definitely walk a lot further it’s done me the power of good it’s well worth
– the course is worth doing even if you can just walk a hundred yards more just push yourself
that little bit it gives you so much more positivity in yourself than just saying oh
I cant do that and you can just come along and try it you’ll be amazed at what you can
do you’re in good hands and everybody is so nice at the gym
[Rachel] it’s a really rewarding job cause I often see people getting their lives back
people often say that they’ve been able to play with their grandchildren which they haven’t
managed to do for a couple of years or little things like being able to go out to bingo
again with their friends [Diana] it has changed my life even my neighbours
at home notice a difference in me if my grandson were to run away from me now he’s six now
mind – I could definitely catch him

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