Living Well With COPD - Page 33

Signs of a COPD flare-Up • Changes in mucus color (yellow or green), texture, and amount • More mucus or difficulty coughing up mucus from the lungs • More severe cough or more frequent coughing • Cold or flu symptoms, such as: - - - - - - - - - - - - Runny nose Sore throat Achy feeling Chills Fever Feelings of feverishness • Increased shortness of breath with activities or at rest There are steps you can take to help avoid flare-ups. • Wheezing or whistling sound in the chest • Prevent infections by avoiding germs and washing your hands regularly. • Watch for cold and flu symptoms. Act quickly if things get worse. • Maintain a regular exercise program (to help you notice smaller changes in lung function). • Talk with your doctor about changes in your symptoms. • Create a plan with your doctor for what to do if you get sick (an Action Plan). COPD flare-ups are treated by: • • Changing your medications • • Possibly adding oxygen Adding oral corticosteroids and/or antibiotics Hospitalization, for serious flare- ups Call your health-care provider if: You are more short of breath than usual Your cough gets worse You are coughing up more mucus or having trouble getting mucus up Your mucus changes from clear or white to green or yellow You are coughing up blood or mucus with blood in it You have fever or chills or feel general achiness or fatigue Your sleep is very disturbed or you are more sleepy than normal You are feeling confused 31