Regular Exercise May Help COPD Sufferers Avoid Hospitalization

Rafal Olkis/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Individuals who suffer from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, COPD, can reduce their risk of hospitalization following severe attacks by getting out and walking a mile to three and a half miles each and every day.

COPD refers to breathing difficulty involving emphysema and chronic bronchitis. Symptoms include coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath, labored breathing and chest tightness.

Researchers at five Spanish respiratory clinics studied 543 COPD patients and their exercise levels, and compared the findings to hospitalization information.

The researchers found those who maintained a moderate to intense fitness regimen -- which often included low-intensity activities such as walking a mile to three and a half miles each day -- had a much lower risk of hospitalization from serious breathing issues. Those who did not exercise regularly or not often enough were at much greater risk of hospitalization.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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