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O2 patients success in the ALA CLIMB FOR AIR Denver, CO Feb 24, 2013

Posted Feb 26 2013 8:27pm
ALA CLIMB FOR AIR Denver, CO Feb 24, 2013We had to rise and shine at 4:30 to get all prepped to go. Driving through snow to get there… We have to check in an hour before start time, That is a grind... but only once per year thank goodness.

We are started off every 8 seconds- start time for out team began 8:20 AM, there were many many teams,over 2000 participants still arriving when we left at 10 AM .   Up one step, next step- very slowly from the beginning- gets one there without major need for a rest-as long as O2 sats are fair to middling (91 % minimum, but preferred 95% or higher) - Yes I frequently checkmy Nonin Onyx II oximeter. The airducts were going full blast, very lovely cooling- but aggravating for some with asthma component...   water is supplied about 4 places en route. Winning climbers took circa 6-8 minutes…wow. Average around 15 minutes..The Republic Bank's stairway is about 4-5 ft wide, about 19-20 or more steps per floor.landings every 10 steps up... easy for other climbers to pass by... I usually pause when theypass me to see the stairway - it is near the end of this video you can see my slow deliberate up a step at a time....

Following Dr Brian Tiep’s advice to TELL patients What IS POSSIBLE ! for some, so start working on YOUR possible.


  I hope our climbing with oxygen inspires some patients, I know some will just feel sour grapes-can't please everyone..Our team American Medical Sales and Repair/COPD+ team of 18- included O2 users” - Marilyn, a (double TX a little over a year ago) She completed all 56 stories - way faster than predicted.   She still needs O2 due to complications but is still moving more towards what is possible for her that included the 1,098 steps up = in Denver that is a mile high plus another 1000 feet up... so close to 6,000 ft altitude.
a challenge to say the least she did a fantastic climb – imagine yourself climbing 56 stories.

Mike McBride made it to the top, in spite of having had pneumonia a few weeks ago... still recovering - slowed him down enough that I managed to stay ahead of him this year for a couple of minutes for the 'first' & only time instead of trailing behind... he is training again to re-qualify to walk another Boston Marathon.
Our captain,
John More from 'American Medical Sales & Repair' plus other staff members from AMSR;  Taylor, a rep from Caire/Chart industries flew in from Atlanta to climb with us...we chatted about their equipment and the Eclipse... plus there were friends and relatives and my RRT!    -almost all 18 members of our team made it through light snow to get there by 7 AM. Several hours later when we left it was 'almost' a white out blizzard getting home. Spooky driving! We could barely see a very blurry football field distance
- took almost 2 hours for us going home...(an hour going).

My oxygen set up this year was different,   Back packing a Caire LOX high flow- continuous LOX portable set on 15 L with a Y connector that has attached green tubing. I reversed the idea of two portables delivering oxygen to a person's cannula (or tto or glasses) instead, I set it on 15 L, and fed the one tube to my TTO-(necking with oxygen) through a regular gauge and the other tube through a little oxy-view gauge (which offers more resistance than the other one) to OxyView Glasses.
Delivered to the TTO was a flow of 10.5 liters and to the Glasses 4.5 L.   A very nice satisfying total of 15 liters together that kept my sats at 93-94% as I climbed higher, it rose up around 95%, because I slowed down and paused whenever someone passed by me. My pulse rate hit 155 bpm   slowing down lowered it -allowing sats to improve upward...that high pulse rate is routine with exertion for me...keeping saturation level higher keeps the HR lower...[one portable set on 15 L lasts an hour - enough to go up, photo and elevator down for another tank]

Amazing what one can do 'if' they decide they want to,
Mike & Marilyn, with Fev 1 at 40% & 45% or better, mine a lot better at 74% (but 10 - 14 years older)
but the challenge for everyone is the same, practice practice, arranging to have enough oxygen, etc. It did take me 3 full years of rehabbing to get strong enough for this in 2006, and I don't recommend it for everyone,
these athletic events aren't for every one even with normal lungs. All I want patients to see is

what is possible, not what one should do, just aim for doing a step or more...each day.

-Am I having fun yet? Well, playing with the equipment is fun, climbing stairs = sheer boredom and drudgery,
couldn't do it without my tape recorded music from the 50's. It took me 36 minutes, 6 minutes longer than last year, this being my 8th trip upward and maybe last year climbing,
74 is old enough I think.
So, I hope that opens the eyes of some that more CAN be done... if they want it enough.

  Mary Burns presentation film of the 70+ year old gal doing the 10 K with her son or grandsons turned me into a believer, you CAN do more, if you keep moving... moving more 'n more and then a little bit more,
it REALLY does help slow the progression of COPD, and helps all of us keep a better quality of life than if we didn't do some moving to take care of ourselves. our team- last year

You better believe I had to take a 2 hr. nap after we got home. EXTRA Fascinating:Wired Health conference "LIVING BY NUMBERS" by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation interviewing Dr Eric Topol...lasting 26:31 minutes it is - fascinating! worth the time to watch...(imho as a patient) imagine how remote area patients would be helped, or home bound unable to go to dr.-Veterinarians use it and doctors -though it isn't yet FDA approved, it is given to beginning student doctors like the stethoscope before doctor we know, trained in its use a couple of years ago - he'd like to get one when the price comes down, but, it - is not FDA approved so 'verboten' at some places.I watched it all with my husband - imagine looking at your own heart functioning, at the same time the doctor is seeing it miles away. see your ekg, without wire link ups, ultrasound in privacy of own home...I want one, this says it began in 2009... Vscan pocket-sized, ultra-smart ultra-sound unveiled 

(Roxlyn G. Cole) Littleton, CO
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