Tuesday , July 16 2024

The Air in Florida: Good for Those with COPD?

By David Ebner – Staff Writer
The Air in Florida-  Good for Those with COPD?   Each year, the American Lung Association releases the State of the Air Report, accounting for the air quality of major counties in the United States. It’s probably not news that metropolitan areas throughout the state received varying results in air quality. It may be surprising that not a single Florida city made the top 25 list for most polluted in the country. Ocala, Sebring and the Fort Myers-Cape Coral metropolitan area ranked among the cleanest cities for ozone pollution, a comforting statistic for the 1 million permanent Florida residents who have COPD.
People with COPD suffer from symptom flare-ups often brought on by anxiety, dust, mildew, chemical fumes, excessively warm or cold air, smoke or other types of airborne pollution. Symptom flare-ups include coughing, wheezing, sputum, shortness of breath and fatigue. These facts raise the question of whether Florida air quality helps its 1 million residents fare better against progressive lung disease than residents of other states.
Sweeping changes to further improve Florida air quality may be years ahead, but progressive, more immediate help for those with COPD in Florida is available now. A specialty clinic in Tampa, the Lung Institute (lunginstitute.com), treats patients with lung diseases such as COPD, emphysema, chronic bronchitis and pulmonary fibrosis. Rather than using supplemental oxygen or a variety of medications to treat symptoms, they treat lung disease directly using stem cells from the patient’s body.
Stem cells act as the body’s healing system. The body alerts these cells, and they flow to the area that needs repair. Under normal circumstances, this process takes time. Stem cells react slowly, even more slowly in the body of someone who is chronically ill. The physicians at the Lung Institute realized this and developed a process to help stem cells do what they naturally do, only more quickly.
The physicians extract a patient’s own stem cells from blood or bone marrow tissue, separate the cells and return them intravenously to the patient. Stem cells then travel through the heart to the lungs, where they are trapped in what the Lung Institute calls the pulmonary trap,  where stem cells congregate, and where they can help promote healing of the lungs, potentially improving lung function.
A recent Lung Institute research study indicates that 82 percent of patients report an increase in quality of life after treatment, and 60 percent of those who took a pulmonary function test saw an increase in lung function.
Since the Lung Institute was founded, the Tampa clinic has treated over 800 patients locally. Nationwide, the company operates 5 clinics in Tampa, FL; Nashville, TN; Pittsburgh, PA; Scottsdale, AZ and Dallas, TX, and has treated over 2000 patients.
In Florida, the air quality removes residents from the discussion the rest of the country is having about developing alternative solutions to air pollution problems. It’s obvious that what the rest of the country is doing isn’t working, which is how those suffering from COPD have felt for years. They’ve been told the same thing, given the same medications and little has been done to improve their care until now. An alternative treatment is now available for those with COPD in Florida through stem cell therapy. Maybe the rest of the country should take a page from Lung Institute’s book and look at their air quality in the same way.
If you or a loved one suffer from a chronic lung disease, the specialists at the Lung Institute may be able to help. You can contact the Lung Institute at 800-921-4631 or visit lunginstitute.com/health to find out if you qualify for these new treatments.

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