Chest Diseases: Exercise for Emphysema


Long extolled as a tonic for lazy muscles, bicycling is now being boosted as a treatment for a far more serious disability. Using a rigid cycling regimen, says Boston's Dr. Harry Bass, he has been able to help patients afflicted with emphysema, a respiratory ailment that gradually impairs breathing and kills as many as 20,000 Americans a year.

Bike therapy totally reverses the traditional rest-and-medication treatment for emphysema. "I tell patients to do more, not less," reports Dr. Bass in Medical World News. Using $20 stationary exercising bicycles, the director of Peter Bent Brigham Hospital's pulmonary division starts his patients...

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