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Pulmonary Rehabilitation

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Pulmonary Rehabilitation is treatment programme for those who experience shortness of breath everyday.

It helps those with COPD (which includes emphysema, chronic bronchitis and asthma) Bronchiectasis and Pulmonary Fibrosis. People that have these conditions usually complain of shortness of breath, cough, phlegm and chest tightness. Pulmonary Rehabilitation will help you to cope with how your chest condition is affecting you in your day to day life.

The aims of Pulmonary Rehabilitation are:

  1. To improve your fitness: so you can do more of the things you want to do without feeling so tired and breathless; so you can complete your day to day tasks more easily
  2. To learn more about your chest condition and how to manage it. This is done through informal teaching sessions that will give you the chance to ask questions as well. The topics covered are:
    • What is COPD? What is ILD?
    • The Role of Exercise
    • Breathlessness
    • Clearing Secretions 1
    • Clearing secretions 2
    • Pacing and Energy Conservation
    • Goal Setting
    • Social Services and Carer Support
    • Managing Stress
    • Stress and Anxiety
    • Nutrition and Hydration
    • Holidays and Travel
    • Equipment
      Self Management of COPD
    • After PRP finishes


The programme

The programme lasts for Eight weeks. At the start of the programme you will receive an information booklet with a timetable for you to take home. The programme consists of two sessions per week, each session lasting about three hours.

What will happen?

Before starting the programme you will be assessed. This will allow us to develop an exercise programme just for you based on how fit you are before you start of the programme.

You will then come twice a week for 8 weeks. Part of each session will be spent exercising. Although you may not have exercised for some time, please do not worry. The exercises are simple and a member of staff monitors you at all times and adjusts the exercises to suit you and still improve your fitness. Each exercise is done at your own pace as best as you can.

The second component is an informal learning and discussion session. We aim to help you understand more about your breathing problem and how to cope with it. The booklet you receive at the start of the programme covers all the talks and goes into more detail so you will be able to refer back to it at anytime.

In addition to the two sessions a week that you attend with us we will encourage you to start exercising at home as well. We will go through the exercises to do at home at the start of the programme so you have nay problems you can speak to us and we can help sort things out.

Some patients feel that although they would like to benefit from exercising, they do not want to attend an exercise programme due to various reasons. If this is the case then we are able to start you off at home with exercising and encourage you to carry on by yourself.

Maintenance Programme

Pulmonary Rehabilitation does not end when you finish the programme. You will be encouraged to continue to exercise at home or at a local Gym. We have therefore put together a Maintenance Programme. This will give you the opportunity to continue exercising, still under the supervision of someone who has an understanding of your breathing problem and help you to continue to improve your fitness. The maintenance classes are held at HALO Leisure.

Breathe Easy Support Group

Breathe Easy is a national support group for people with breathing problems. The support group is run by members themselves with the support of the British Lung Foundation. This enables each group the opportunity to support each other as they see fit but most groups usually organise social events and learning activities of interest to their members.

The group meets from 2pm to 4pm on the last Tuesday of every month, at Bartestree Village Hall, Ledbury Road, Hereford, HR1 4BY.

Please contact the Midlands office before going to your first meeting by telephoning 0116 249 5780 or emailing: They will give you the group's contact details so that you can check the meeting is on.

© Wye valley NHS Trust 2019