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Alternative Treatment for COPD

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Updated August 04, 2010

Written or reviewed by a board-certified physician. See About.com's Medical Review Board.

When other methods of COPD treatment fail, many patients look to alternative treatment for COPD to relieve their COPD symptoms. From herbal remedies to stem cell therapy, learn more about alternative COPD treatment in this guide.

Herbal Remedies for COPD

Herbal Treatment for COPD
Photo courtesy of Flickr.com, user LiyintheDesignerinPajamas

Herbs have been used and appreciated by man for medicinal purposes for centuries. Although the effectiveness of herbal medicine has not yet been established beyond a reasonable doubt, herbal remedies for COPD are increasing in popularity.

Antioxidants and COPD

Antioxidants and COPD
Photo courtesy of Getty Images, user Tim Graham

Antioxidants are naturally occurring or synthetic substances that help protect cells from the damaging effects of free radicals, highly reactive compounds created during normal cell metabolism. Although the beneficial relationship between antioxidants and COPD remains unclear, there is some clinical evidence to support that antioxidants may have important health benefits.

Stem Cell Therapy for COPD

Stem Cell Therapy for COPD
Photo courtesy of Barbara Hanson, Stem Cell Pioneers

That no therapeutic intervention has been found to slow the progression of COPD speaks loudly to the importance of finding new ways to treat the disease. Stem cell therapy is slowly but surely making headlines in mainstream medicine as being a promising, potential source of treatment for COPD and many other diseases.

Planting a Healing Garden

Planting a Healing Garden
Photo courtesy of Flickr.com, user andi wydman

These next few suggestions are a bit of a gear change, but they can help you cope with aspects of the disease that other treatment options cannot.

Having an illness like COPD can be extremely stressful for patients and their families, as the diagnosis often brings with it the possibility of pain, disability, reduction of income, frequent, traumatic hospital experiences and even death. A healing garden provides an alternative to traditional healing and may be used as an adjunct to your standard COPD treatment plan.

Pet Therapy and COPD

Pet Therapy for COPD
Photo courtesy of Flickr.com, user bedbathkitten

Pet therapy, or animal-assisted therapy, involves the use of furry animals or other creatures to help people cope with the emotional effects of a disease or illness. While the use of pet therapy for COPD has not yet been established, there are some conclusions that we can draw from other types of research that has focused on the chronically and mentally ill, the elderly and persons who are disabled.

Alternative Therapy Support Group

COPD Forum
Photo courtesy of Flickr.com, user Gentry

Do you have questions about alternative treatment for COPD? Or, perhaps you have a personal success story that you'd like to share with other members of the COPD community. The Alternative Therapy Support Group in the About.com COPD Forum gives those who are interested in alternative treatment for COPD a place to ask questions and find answers from patients who have been there.

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