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Lung cancer

by claire » 01 Nov 2017, 12:05

My friend's father is suffering from difficulty in breathing due to lung cancer. What should we do to help him feel better at home?
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Joined: 10 Feb 2017, 12:03

by Margaret » 08 Nov 2017, 14:26

Dear Claire,

It is important to be aware that severity of the symptoms depend on stages of his lung cancer. In general, treating doctor will assess the severity of patient especially patient’s latest lung function status. While most of lung cancer patient is undergoing treatment, among simple steps can be practiced at home:

1. Use controlled breathing techniques. Patient can be taught to take slow, even breaths by inhaling deeply through nose (for a count of two) and exhaling for twice as long as patient inhaled (for a count of four). During exhalation, put your lips together as if slowly blowing out a candle. This is called pursed-lip breathing.

2. Pace activities. Plan day ahead. Use energy on the activities that are most important first. If suddenly become short of breath during an activity, stop and rest. Avoid multiple trips up and down stairs and take rest breaks in between activities. Also, try to plan activities that involve sitting down, such as listening to music, watching television, reading, or playing board games.

3. Choose a comfortable position. Comfortable positioning may help make breathing easier. While in bed, raise head on pillows. Do not lie flat on back. Instead, lie with your knees bent, or place a pillow under your knees. When sitting in a chair, sit upright and lean slightly forward with your arms resting on a table.

Talk to the treating doctors on other methods and techniques to relieve breathlessness. There are many other methods that perhaps suit more than the mentioned above.

(NCSM doctor's opinion)
Margret, Cancer Information Service Nurse
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Joined: 28 Aug 2017, 11:40

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