end stage COPD

End stage COPD is also called as very severe COPD. This is also called as stage iv COPD and is a serious condition that needs good medical care. When your FEV1(Forced Expiratory Volume in 1 second) is less than 30% of normal you are termed to be in stage 4. Your doctor uses tests like spirometry,oximetry,x-rays,arterial gas tests to evaluate your condition. Sometimes the term “end stage” is misleading because some patients live for a long time with proper care

What are the symptoms?

In stage 4 you have extreme difficulty with breathing. Even at rest you feel shortness of breath(dyspnea) and in addition you have severe cough and mucus. Patients might experience acute exacerbations including blue-grey lips , blue-grey fingernails , clubbing of finger tips. Anxiety levels are not normal in many patients who are suffering from severe form of this disease.

What to expect now ?

1)Acute exacerbations – Increased cough and sputum , increased shortness of breath , fever , bluish fingernails etc are observed.

2)Medical treatment ,┬áSurgical treatment – Doctors uses medical and surgical methods to treat the condition. Listed below are further details

3)Oxygen supply – Oxygen supply is very much essential in this case as the patient is short of oxygen levels

4)hospice : A hospice is a medical care facility that takes the medical and emotional care of terminally ill patients. If the patient reaches a bad stage , hospice care might be recommended.

5)extreme shortness of breath – Patient will be unable to breath easily even at rest. Utmost care has to be taken so that the patient gets adequate oxygen supply

6)Anxiety,Depression and emotional aspect – In this stage , anxiety levels are beyond normal and emotional support is needed to ease their condition

7)Cor pulmonale – Right side of the heart might be impacted

Treatment options:

a)Medical treatment: Bronchodilators,Steroids,Combination drugs are some of the medical treatments available

b)Surgical treatment: LVRS , bullectomy and lung transplant are some of the surgical options

More information about teatment is available here

Factors impacting the length of survival:

Age,sex,smoking status , length of smoking , FEV1 readings , length of disease , diabetes , BMI , hypertension are some of the factors that influence the COPD patients. Healthy diet supplemented with exercise will always help. And remember that COPD is Not a Death Sentence.