Emphysema, one of the main diseases that cause COPD, is debilitating and progresses over time, causing patient’s symptoms to worsen. As his condition developed, Basil began to experience major challenges with breathlessness and found difficultly in completing common daily activities. His medical management no longer provided the relief he needed to get by.
Prior to his diagnosis, Basil enjoyed hunting, fishing, working on his motorcycle, and staying active by playing with his grandchildren. He held a maintenance job that required him to go up and down stairs, which was not any easy feat when his breathlessness presented. He remembers feeling “heartbroken” at the realization that he would not be able to continue the activities he loved as his symptoms progressed. Basil quickly became unable to walk short distances, breathe, and even eat, causing him to lose an unhealthy amount of weight. He was frequently sick and spent most of his time going in and out of the hospital. None of the doctors could pinpoint exactly what was wrong and he often heard that he only had about five years left to live. Despite inhalers, a nebulizer, various medications, and oxygen, nothing gave him relief. His wife, Terri, says “it’s awful to see a loved one who is so active become worse off.” Like any caregiver who wants to see their loved one get better, she remembers being ready to just give up, because no doctor was able to provide a solution. However, she knew she had to become his strength to keep pushing forward.
At his worst, Basil couldn’t even sit in a chair and the only way he could breathe was bent over the counter with his chin in his hands. Just when he was about to give up, Basil’s doctor did a full health evaluation; determining that Basil was going into heart failure because his lungs were so hyperinflated that they were pushing on his diaphragm. In analyzing these results, his doctor thought he may be a candidate for endobronchial valves. After going through a series of non-invasive tests to see if he qualified, Basil’s doctor believed that the Spiration® Valve System procedure would be the best option as it could help improve lung function and Basil’s quality of life. Finding out that he was an eligible patient for this procedure gave him a glimmer of hope, and Basil was excited by the possibility of getting relief from his symptoms.
Just days after the procedure, Basil was able to get up and walk around somewhat, which just a few days before, was impossible for Basil without oxygen. He could take a deep breath, eat more than a few bites of food, walk without help, and lay on his back. The Spiration® Valve System provided Basil and Terri a renewed look at life in the future. As a couple, they came to “appreciate each other every day” and learned not to take anything for granted.
Basil is excited to be able to hug and play with his grandchildren again. He hopes to get back to all of his favorite outdoor activities, like camping and fishing. Basil feels he can finally be himself again. #BeYouAgain