Editorials

Pulmonary rehabilitation

BMJ 1997; 314 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.314.7091.1361 (Published 10 May 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;314:1361

Improves quality of life in chronic lung disease, but evaluation must continue

  1. M K Sridhar, Consultant thoracic physiciana
  1. a Mid-Staffordshire NHS Trust, Staffordshire District General Hospital, Stafford ST16 3SA

    Chronic lung diseases cause considerable disability. In Britain, one in 10 men and one in 20 women aged over 65 suffer from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease alone, and chronic lung disease is estimated to be responsible for over 25 million lost working days each year.1 For the vast majority of these patients–including those with smoking induced bronchitis, emphysema, and chronic severe asthma–there is no prospect of a cure. It was, and in many places still is, common practice for these patients to seek medical help and undergo investigations that establish a diagnosis, only to be told that there is very little or nothing that can be done. However, increasing evidence suggests that these patients will benefit from taking part in a multi-disciplinary pulmonary rehabilitation programme.2 3

    Pulmonary rehabilitation was born of the recognition that, while most chronic lung diseases are not amenable …

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