Skip to main content

Learn about COVID-19 testing and treatment. Or how to get vaccinated.

Lake Regional Observes COPD Month, Shares New Treatment Option

Thursday, November 10, 2022

This November, Lake Regional Pulmonology is observing National Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Awareness Month. The goal is to provide education and to highlight an innovative treatment option.

Severe COPD/emphysema is a chronic lung disease that makes breathing extremely difficult. More than 15 million Americans have been diagnosed with COPD, which means most Americans know someone who has been diagnosed with this condition.

COPD is an umbrella term used for emphysema and chronic bronchitis. This month is the perfect time to review the causes and risk factors of this disease:

  • COPD is caused by damage to the lungs’ air sacs, known as alveoli, possibly due to smoking, pollutants or a genetic predisposition.
  • Symptoms of COPD include difficulty breathing, cough, mucus production and wheezing.
  • Quitting smoking is essential to prevention and treatment.
  • COPD is the third-leading cause of death in the United States.
  • There is currently no cure for severe COPD/emphysema.

Lake Regional Pulmonology offers COPD patients many treatment options. One new minimally invasive option for some patients with severe emphysema is Zephyr Endobronchial Valves.

The Zephyr® Valve is clinically proven to improve lung function, exercise capacity and quality of life for patients with severe COPD/emphysema. For patients who qualify, the therapy is delivered via a bronchoscopy procedure that is usually complete in under an hour. The technology prevents air from being trapped in the more diseased parts of the lung, which reduces hyperinflation and allows the healthier part of the lung to function better.

Pulmonologist Joe Sohal, M.D., FCCP Pulmonologist Joe Sohal, M.D., FCCP

“Many COPD patients on medications and oxygen still struggle for breath,” said Lake Regional Pulmonologist Joe Sohal, M.D., FCCP. “The Zephyr Valve is a treatment option for some of these patients that can provide relief and improve quality of life, without major surgical intervention.”

To learn more about Zephyr Valves and who qualifies, please visit or call 573.302.3199.