COPD: Should CT scans be done along with x-rays?
Many take CTscan. Is this something that should be done along with xrays. Neither my GP or Pulmonalist have ordered one. It was last done 14 years ago.
Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the COPD: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease Support Group.
What they use these days that Wayne speaks so highly of is a low dose CT scan. Hopefully this link to info on the CDC's site works because I am also a grateful fan of the test! https://www.cdc.gov/cancer/lung/basic_info/screening.htm
@bluelagoon– Yeah for you, what a perfect reply.
@joangma – Good morning- I've had 4 lung cancers over the space of 21 years.When I started needed them only high dose CT scans were available and when they were available, low dose. A lot of people on Connect have had cancer for a very long time. To my knowledge no one has suffered ill effects from having CT scans, especially at low doses.
Read this to see how minimal the damage is: https://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/ct-scan/expert-answers/ct-scans/faq-20057860
They didnt do one on my husband until he got pneumonia. But since they found the mac bacterial and pulmonary fibrosis they have done more of them
On the subject of copd: I have the disease. I quit smoking 13 years ago. when I quit I started a rigorous exercise routine including weight training and running. I understand the lung damage is permanent but my question is how does is concept of "lung function" distinguishable from "lung damage" and can lung function improve? I'm sure mine has.
@joelars– Good morning and welcome to Mayo Connect. What an excellent question. Since lung damage can not be completely repaired, the exchange of gases when you inhale is less because of it. Damaged lung walls and tubes restrict the intake of oxygen and the exhalation of carbon dioxide. As air sacs (alveoli) become smaller or rupture less Co2 can be expelled, taking up room that should be for new O2. This is caused by either emphysema (damage to air sacs) or chronic bronchitis (inflammation of airways). I did the same thing as you did, exercised vigorously after I healed from my first lung cancer. And my lung function did improve like yours. Since COPD is a slow, progressive disease unfortunately over time it will get worse.
@bluelagoon, @sakota, @joangma– Can you share your experiences?
Is there any hope on the horizon from new medical techniques for lung damage sufferers?
@joelars – I hope so. You could research that.
Great question, @joelars. "How does is concept of "lung function" distinguishable from "lung damage" and can lung function improve?"
In addition to @merpreb, I'd like to bring @windwalker into this discussion. She also has a story to tell about improving lung function.
Regenerative medicine is an advancement that holds promise for lung disease, but that research is still very early days in pulmonary research.
Joe, it sounds like you're doing all the right things to improve your health and to slow progression of COPD. Here's more information from Mayo Clinic about management and treatment options. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/copd/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20353685
Have you ever had pulmonary function tests, or PFTs, to measure how well your lungs work?
@joelars Hello. It sounds like you are doing the right things to keep your lung function up. Toned muscles use up less oxygen. That helps a great deal and should help keep you from being very short of breath. Your heart also benefits from excersize. A healthy heart can better aid your lungs. Since you exercise, I'd imagine that you also have a healthy diet. That is important also. I have multiple serious lung diseases. I was pre-qualfied for a double lung transplant in 2013 because my lung function kept dropping year after year. With care at Mayo, the progression has been substancially slowed and am out of danger for needing the transplant for now. I shocked my dr last June with an improvement in oxygen saturation. I move a lot, go to the gym, ride a bike. These things have helped me along with eliminating things that caused inflammation. i.e. limited alcohol, eliminated fragrances in products like laundry detergent and deoderant. Get a flu shot every year. Avoid sick people and germy places. Avoid smoke of any kind, including bonfires.Try to avoid any lung infections. Those do some amount of damage to the lungs each time you get one. You may or may not progress to a debilitating point in your lifetime with your disease; everybody is different. With healthy habits and a good attitude, you may very well stabilize your condition.