Lung disease patient support group gives relaxation workshop

A support group near Kettering that was the first group for those with pulmonary fibrosis in the county has held a relaxation techniques class for patients.

Friday, 1st November 2019, 12:45 pm
Mel Wheeler led a session on relaxation techniques

Pulmonary fibrosis is a lung disease that gradually destroys the lungs and makes breathing difficult. There is no cure and there is no certainty over what causes the disease.

The average life expectancy after diagnosis is between three and five years and diagnosis can take a long time too.

The support group started in January this year and was set up by Penny Tremayne because there was no group in Northamptonshire and it is run in partnership with the charity Action for Pulmonary Fibrosis.

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Before the group was set up, there was no support for pulmonary fibrosis patients in Northamptonshire

Penny said: "We run a support group for people to bring them together to share and learn from each other."

The group usually meets on the last Tuesday of every month in Mawsley and at their most recent meeting on October 29 the group learnt about relaxation techniques with guest speaker Mel Wheeler, who is a mental health lecturer at De Montford University.

Penny said: "It was just about showing them a few techniques to enable them to relax and have a bit of fun."

Pulmonary fibrosis is a chronic disease but Penny said not many people are aware of the illness.

The meetings offer support to those with the disease and their families

The British Lung Foundation says pulmonary fibrosis is the end result of many different conditions that cause a build up of scar tissue.

Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis is the most common type of the disease and occurs in less than five people per 10,000.

Penny Tremayne, whose mother had the disease, said: "The prognosis is worse than cancer but the amount of money that people get is... I can't even tell you without getting angry."

Penny said before the group for Northamptonshire was started, there was very little support for patients.

The meeting was very well attended

She hopes more work through UK Action for Pulmonary Fibrosis will raise the profile of the disease.