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Good lung health means you can breathe easily and effectively to allow your body to function well. Lung disease can make breathing difficult. Depending on the type of lung disease, common problems can be: trouble getting air into or out of the lungs, trouble getting oxygen into or around the body, problems with a build-up of phlegm or fluid in the lungs, or a growth of a tumour in or around the lungs. These problems can make it harder to move, exercise, work and do daily activities.
Lung conditions that cause breathing problems and may benefit from physiotherapy include the following:

  • Asthma
  • Bronchiectasis
  • Bronchitis
  • COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease)
  • Cystic Fibrosis
  • Emphysema
  • Lung Cancer
  • Post-Operative Care
  • Recurrent chest infections


What will a Chartered Physiotherapist do for me?

Pulmonary Rehabilitation classes are specialised programmes which combine exercise and education, with the aim of improving physical fitness and the ability to self-manage your condition.
Your Chartered Physiotherapist will first assess your individual problem and then devise a specialised treatment plan which may incorporate some of the following:

  • Breathing exercises – techniques to reduce shortness of breath or aid clearance of mucus/phlegm
  • Manual techniques – percussion and vibrations to loosen mucus/phlegm.
  • Positioning – to optimize lung expansion and secretion clearance.
  • Exercise programmes – improving activity levels and fitness.
  • Education/Self-Management – advice on the correct use and purpose of inhalers, nebulisers, and oxygen.

If appropriate, your physiotherapist will liaise with your doctor, hospital consultant or other health care professional, to help you manage your lung condition to the best of your ability.


Useful Links & Resources

COPD Support Ireland


The content on this page is provided for general information purposes only and is not meant to replace a physiotherapy or medical consultation. The ISCP is not responsible for the content of any external sites, nor should selection be seen as an endorsement of them.

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