Diagnosed with COPD? you Can take charge Of Your Health!

Doctor discussing treatment with patient
Ali Khorasani

Ali Khorasani, Pharm D

Director of Clinical Services, SuperCare Health

Ali Khorasani focuses his extensive pharmacotherapy knowledge and unflagging dedication to improving the lives of SuperCare Health’s patients with serious chronic conditions. He earned his B.A. in psychology from UC Irvine and his PharmD from Touro College.

Getting diagnosed with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) can be scary and overwhelming. Have you been told that you have a long-term respiratory disease that is progressive and cannot be cured? It sounds scary, but with dedication, planning, and the right help, you can live a long, healthy life without worrying about the burden COPD can cause in your daily life.

As a Clinical Pharmacist who focuses on improving patient outcomes, it is my passion to empower my patients with the knowledge and tools they need for COPD management and to overcome the fear and anxiety of being labeled with a Chronic Respiratory condition.

Moment of Truth

You just found out why you run out of breath so quickly, wheeze once in a while, and get so many upper respiratory infections around flu season. You went to the pulmonologist, did a few breathing tests, answered some questions, and were diagnosed with COPD!

What May Have Contributed To Your Diagnosis

  • Years of cigarette smoking or exposure to secondhand smoking
  • History of severe asthma with irritants and pollutants overtime
  • Genetics

What’s Next?

Setting goals and being motivated to live a healthy normal life.

  • Manage symptoms and slow progression of COPD
  • Restore quality of life
  • Increase physical activity and exercise, if advised by your doctor

Picking An “A TEAM” To Fight COPD

  • Pulmonologist/primary doctor
    They will guide you through this COPD management journey with the right follow-ups and will prescribe you the right medications and supplies. Make sure you always set follow-up appointments and provide up to date doctor contact information to each.
  • Pharmacist/pharmacy
    The first step to treating COPD is to change your lifestyle. Exercise, breathing treatments, and quitting smoking are a great place to start.

    Take medicine to help improve your lung function and breathing. Medications are the only way you can improve your symptoms and slow the disease progression.

    Work with your doctor to come up with the best therapy tailored to you.

    Pharmacists are the most readily available and trusted healthcare providers available to patients! They help you stay on top of your medicine, save money, and understand the reason behind your doctors’ prescriptions and recommendations!
  • Respiratory therapist
    The name gives it away! You need help breathing, and they know everything about it.
  • COPD support/education group
    e.g. COPD Foundation, COPD Action Plan and more
  • Finally, a strong and determined YOU – team captain!
    COPD is progressive, but only if you don’t do anything about it. A COPD management program, like iBreathe from SuperCare Health, can help patients live a normal and healthy life. This proven program aids patients in remaining proactive in their care with equipment set up, remote patient monitoring, online appointments, 24/7 clinical team, and more! 

Common Mistakes With Medications

  • I don’t need to take my maintenance medication if I breathe normally
    Think of your maintenance medications as a routine. You are only breathing normally because you’re taking the medication on time and giving your lungs the power they need to function normally.  If it says to take on schedule – take it, because that’s the only way it works, even if you don’t feel the difference.
  • I don’t need my rescue inhaler because I don’t have symptoms anymore
    Even though certain external factors may contribute to an exacerbation, or episode of shortness of breath, you can never be sure when the next one may come. Always be prepared and have your rescue inhaler handy to use as needed.
  • My doctor and pharmacist told me to take my maintenance medication twice daily, but I have been taking it once daily and it still works
    Please take your maintenance medication as prescribed. Trust your doctor and pharmacist that if there was a way to do it differently, they would have been the first one to tell you!

    Taking medication on a routine schedule as prescribed is the only way you can trust that you are getting the long-term effect your doctor has in mind. 
  • I don’t feel my maintenance inhaler/nebulizer medicine is working after a dose so I stopped taking it
    Maintenance COPD medications don’t usually provide a quick and noticeable effect after a dose. These medications are designed to work through a special method to maintain your lung function over a long period of time. Think of it as a blood pressure medication or medication for your blood sugar. You have to take it every day regardless of how you feel because it is working in the background.

You Are Not Alone In This Fight

SuperCare Health has specialized teams that are trained, and dedicated to improving your life after COPD diagnosis. We understand the burden COPD may cause on a patient’s life. Whether it’s the mental and physical challenges, cost of therapy, access to medications and supplies, or support of respiratory care specialists, we have made it our mission to be there when our patients need us – every step of the way! Learn more about how SuperCare Health can help.