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Talking to Your Doctor About Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
- Bring someone else with you. It helps to have another person hear what is said and ask questions you may not have thought to ask.
- Write out your questions ahead of time, so you don't forget them.
- Write down the answers you get, and ask for clarification, if necessary.
- Don't be afraid to ask where you can obtain more information about what you are discussing. You have a right to know.
- Based on my medical history, lifestyle, and family background, am I at risk for COPD?
- How do I know if someone in my family had or has COPD? What physical signs or symptoms should I be looking for?
- Are there genetic tests I should undergo to see if I’m likely to develop COPD?
- How do I best prevent COPD?
- How can my lungs be checked and how often should they be checked?
- How do I best treat COPD?
What medications are available to help me?
- What are the benefits/side effects of these medications?
- Will these medications interact with other medications, over-the-counter products, or dietary or herbal supplements I am already taking for other conditions?
- Are there any alternative or complementary therapies that will help me?
- Will I need surgery for COPD?
- Would I benefit from a comprehensive pulmonary rehabilitation program?
- Are there dietary changes I should make? How do I go about it?
- Should I stop drinking alcohol?
- How can I find help to quit smoking?
- How will I know that my prevention or treatment program is effective?
- Can you suggest a support group?
- Will I still be able to work and participate in activities?
- What is my long-term outlook? By how much can I improve that outlook if I quit smoking?
- Reviewer: Michael Woods, MD, FAAP
- Review Date: 02/2017
- Update Date: 03/15/2015