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4 Complications Your Loved One Might Experience from COPD

Elderly Care in Youngsville, NC

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD, may seem to be complicated enough on its own, but it can lead to a whole host of other problems for your elderly loved one. It’s important that you and any other family members that help your loved one, are able to be alert to these complications in case other medical assistance is necessary.

Respiratory Infections

Since your loved one’s lungs are already damaged, they’re susceptible to a variety of respiratory infections. Things that normally your loved one might be able to shrug off, such as a cold or the flu, becomes even more dangerous for your elderly loved one with COPD. Your loved one is also more likely to be susceptible to pneumonia. Work with your loved one’s medical team to learn ways to help your loved one reduce his risk for developing respiratory illnesses.

Heart Trouble

Your loved one’s respiratory system works closely with his cardiovascular system. Your lungs supply oxygen to your body through the blood that pumps through your cardiovascular system. When any part of that system isn’t working properly, it can cause problems in otherwise mostly healthy systems, especially the heart. It’s important that your loved one has regular checkups, including his heart, to make sure that the COPD hasn’t affected his cardiovascular system.

High Blood Pressure

COPD can also contribute to higher than normal blood pressure in your elderly loved one. Because of the related issues with your loved one’s cardiovascular system and the lowered oxygen levels in his blood, his body may try to compensate with higher blood pressure. This may go away if your loved one has his COPD under control or he may need additional medication to get his blood pressure within normal limits.

Depression and Isolation

COPD can make it difficult for your elderly loved one to engage in normal activities. This can cause feelings of depression to start appearing. Your loved one may not be as active as he used to be, either, which could lead to more time spent alone. Couple these facts with the reality that dealing with chronic illnesses can make your loved one feel depressed as well, and your loved one’s emotional health can also suffer from COPD.

It’s important to stay on the lookout for signs that these complications can be affecting your loved one’s life. If you do notice something that seems like it could be a developing complication, talk to your loved one’s doctor right away.


If you or an aging loved one are considering non-medical in-home care in Raleigh, NC, call Griswold Home Care and speak to one of our caring staff members today. Call (919) 229-8944