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National Heart Lung and Blood Institute (2010) reported that COPD is irreversible with no known treatment to date making it as the leading cause of disability and ranked as the third contributing factor of mortality in the United States. National Heart Lung and Blood Institute added that emphysema and chronic bronchitis are the two most common conditions referred to by physicians as COPD since the two characteristically coexists. Unfortunately, healthcare practitioners focus their treatment approach to COPD mainly on the pathophysiology not knowing that psychological impact that follows the physical decline also plays a great role in shaping the experience of COPD patients (Simpson and Rocker, 2008).
Therefore, to effectively address the management of COPD, a holistic approach must be carried out. To achieve this, an individual nursing care plan of treatment must be conducted by a healthcare practitioner. This include: modification of lifestyle, optimization of pulmonary status through pharmacotherapy, exercise, nutritional and metabolic intervention strategies, and psychotherapy (van der Valk, 2004). As mentioned previously, COPD ranked as the number one cause of irreversible morbidity in the United States to date.