The keys to managing COPD are to stop smoking, take your medications, avoid irritants and infections, exercise, and see your doctor frequently. Frequent visits, as often as monthly, will help you and your doctor closely manage your condition. Ask your doctor how often to schedule appointments.
If you are having any of the symptoms described below, don’t wait for your next appointment to call your doctor. Report these symptoms promptly, even if you don’t feel sick. DO NOT wait for symptoms to become so severe that you need to seek emergency care. If your symptoms are discovered early, your doctor might change your treatment or medications to relieve your symptoms. (Never change or stop taking your medications without first talking to your doctor).
Note: Remember that warning signs or symptoms might be the same or different from one flare-up to another.
Talk to your doctor on the phone within 24 hours if you have these changes in your health:
Go to your local emergency department or call 999 (or 911 in the US) if you have:
Know how to contact your doctor after hours and on weekends. Always keep the following close to your phone for easy access:
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This information is provided by the Cleveland Clinic and is not intended to replace the medical advice of your doctor or healthcare provider. Please consult your healthcare provider for advice about a specific medical condition.
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