What is Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease? Have a listen to the full recording of Dr. Crabtree explaining the disease, its prevalence, diagnosis, and treatment in simple terms. The Interview was on air on June 6, 2023 at Bondsy 99-7 THE MIX.

If you think that you or your loved ones may have COPD, please make an appointment with Midwest Allergy Asthma and Respiratory at 217-717-4404. Dr. Crabtree is available for consultations and new patients.  MASA+R also have a research center with on-going COPD paid studies you may be eligible in participating.

About Dr. David Crabtree:

As a highly practiced pulmonologist and critical care specialist, Dr. Crabtree has spent over 30 years caring for patients in the Central IL and the Midwest. Dr. Crabtree received his medical degree at the University of Iowa College of Medicine. He subsequently continued his education at the University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics, where he became Chief Medical Resident at its Internal Medicine Residency Program, and completed his fellowship in Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine.  Dr. Crabtree is also versed in allergic disorders having spent some of his fellowship training with allergy/immunology experts in the field.
He has been Director of Respiratory Therapy, Bronchoscopy, and Pulmonary Rehabilitation at St. John’s Hospital. Dr. Crabtree has a plethora of memberships in professional societies, research experience, teaching, and lectureships, having authored multiple publications. He practice with Central IL Allergy and Respiratory for more than 2 decades and moved his practice post-pandemic to Midwest Allergy Sinus & Respiratory.  He is accepting new patients both outpatient and inpatient.

What is COPD?

Below is an unofficial transcript. Media Courtesy from Neuhoff Media Springfield 99-7 THE MIX. 

Bondsy: What is COPD? Can you please explain in simple terms to the public?

Dr. Crabtree:  Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease or COPD, is a relatively common lung disease.  It is a progressive disease, characterized by irreversible airflow obstruction, unlike asthma which is a reversible disease process. Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease is a persistent inflammation of the airway, punctuated by recurrent exacerbation. Day-to-day symptoms can become much worse by a viral infection or something as simple as pollution. For example, the wild fire smoke in Canada even affected patients here locally in Springfield area.

Over the years we see an increase in morbidity in US and in the world. Unfortunately, people smoke much more in other countries than in the US. However, COPD is still 3rd-4th common cause of death in the US. It is not a minor problem in society.

In the past it is considered a dead lung. An example is the idea that all smokers have the same condition and there is nothing they can do about it. In fact, it is a heterogeneous disease in both susceptibility, inflammatory profile, clinical presentation, long term trajectory and outcome in the end from this disease. The treatment responses are different for every patient. So we need to find different approaches than before, when patients used to be treated with a one-size-fits-all approach.

COPD people usually have cough, wheezing, and are most often tobacco smokers, whether first or second hand. COPD patients may also have other things like occupational exposure, exposure to air pollution, dust, especially metal dust, chemicals. Even smoke from wood stoves can contribute to this disease.

Bondsy: Is diagnosing COPD possible?

Dr. Crabtree: Yes clinical diagnosis is usually a combination of lung function tests which are generally underused other than in pulmonary care. Primary care should use more of this. Patients use devices to get the air in and measure how quickly they can get the air out to determine if there is airway obstruction present which is a major characteristic of COPD. We do a complete history of physical exams and lab work, to rule out other conditions such as heart disease or other things that can mimic COPD.

Bondsy: Probably 20 years ago COPD was not known as much as today with our medical advances and technology. Are there new positive advances for COPD?
Dr. Crabtree: The new treatment is the most important aspect that happened in the past decade. There are many novel treatments. In the past we would give an inhaler, and if it got worse, we would put them on oxygen. However, we’ve got much more now. The approach to treating is completely different than what it had been. Other physicians may disagree with me or the older physicians are rolling over their graves, but their classic gold guidelines are inadequate in determining how to treat patients. The approach needs to be precision type or individualized treatment specific for a patient. Darwin’s 1850’s work talked about lumper and splitter, where people lump things together in a large group or split them up into smaller groups. It has been found that we need to increasingly use techniques to find specific treatments for each of the smaller groups that responds in different ways to the many different options of treatment that we now have.

B: Very good. That’s a lot of information and its remarkable. I love that how these advances are revolutionizing as well as getting better and better for people to live normal lives. Please tell us how patients can seek you out and make an appointment today if they have questions.

Dr. Crabtree: We are here at Midwest Allergy Sinus Asthma and Respiratory. Call us at 217-717-4404. We also have multiple studies going on. There is a lot coming up. I see patients everyday five days a week in the clinic and would be glad to take anyone on who need some assistance.

Visit Asthma2.com for more information.