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Ray D., PA

COPD is an awful disease. I was first diagnosed with it about eight years ago, but I had been having breathing problems for longer than that. Learning that I had COPD gave me a diagnosis, but it didn't provide me relief.

For relief, I turned to respiratory therapy and rehab. I'm on oxygen and that helps immensely, but I'm not cured. My biggest problem is getting rid of carbon dioxide when I exhale.

Cold weather is bad for people with COPD. I have to wear scarfs and wrap them way up around my face in order to breathe. Hot weather is even worse. The heat and humidity are bad enough, but when smog and particle pollution pick up and air quality alerts are issued, I don't even go outside if it can be avoided.

It's through the Lung Association that I've learned about the importance of clean air in the fight against lung disease. Our air didn't become polluted overnight, and it won't become crystal clean overnight either. But that doesn't mean we shouldn't clean it up when and where we can. There are hundreds of thousands of people with lung disease just like me, all across Pennsylvania. We are your friends and neighbors. Help us in the fight for clean, healthy air.


First published: July 9, 2013

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