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At age 29, Dennis C. went to the doctor’s office for a cold and difficulty breathing. A physician’s assistant told the doctor he believed Dennis had a touch of emphysema. The doctor replied that he couldn’t have emphysema — he was too young.

Dennis had just ended his stint with the U.S. Air Force, where he’d proudly served for nearly 10 years. During his years in service, Dennis was exposed to desert sand, soldering fumes, chemicals and secondhand smoke. He was never given a respirator mask, and he was never educated on the importance of using personal protective equipment for his lung health. As a result, Dennis developed chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and emphysema.

Chronic Lung Disease in the Military

Dennis isn’t the only veteran diagnosed with chronic lung disease following military service. Research has found that military personnel returning from Iraq, Afghanistan and other areas in southwest Asia are at higher risk for developing chronic lung conditions. Men and women in service could be exposed to burn pits, chemical fumes and gases, sandstorms, smoke and other environmental threats. Additionally, there are high rates of tobacco use in the military, and smoking is the primary cause of many chronic lung conditions.

Cellular Therapy Can Treat Veterans With Chronic Lung Disease

By June 2017, Dennis couldn’t walk up stairs without struggling to breathe. He had aches and pains all over his body, and at his 6-minute walk test, he was only able to walk 10 to 15 steps before he needed to stop. When Dennis saw an ad for Lung Health Institute on Facebook, he didn’t hesitate to act on the chance to improve his quality of life.

In June 2017, Dennis received his first round of cellular therapy at Lung Health Institute. Cellular therapy is an innovative treatment that uses a person’s platelet-rich plasma-platelet concentrate (PRP-PC) to promote decreased inflammation within the lungs. By reducing airway inflammation, cellular therapy has the potential to prevent further damage to the lungs and slow the progression of chronic lung disease. At 3 months following treatment, 91.6% of patients report a positive outcome.*

Just days after his treatment, Dennis’s color improved, and his cough began disappearing. Over the next several months, his trainer at the gym noticed significant differences. She was able to put him on workout machines he wasn’t able to do before. 

Dennis took another 6-minute walk test soon after his treatment, and this time he was able to walk for 3 minutes before he became short of breath. His PFT results from before and after cellular therapy showed improvement from stage 3 COPD to stage 2 COPD. Now, Dennis lifts weights at the gym and tries to walk at least 10,000 steps a day.

Lung Health Institute Honors Veterans

On Veteran’s Day, we salute all veterans and thank them for their service to our country. We are proud to treat the men and women who have served so bravely. As a small way to express our gratitude, we offer a discounted price for veterans on all of our cellular therapy treatments

If you or a loved one is living with chronic lung disease, contact one of our patient coordinators to learn more about cellular therapy or schedule a free consultation.

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