Living with bronchiectasis can sometimes feel like you’re putting your life on pause. Too often, chronic symptoms can interfere with our quality of life—not to mention the time we want to spend with friends, family, and pursuing our passions.
The good news is, bronchiectasis doesn’t have to hold you back from experiencing life’s precious moments or finding new adventures. Thanks to advances in airway clearance therapy, you can take back control of your condition and start enjoying symptom relief—one breath at a time.
How SmartVest Can Help
If you follow our blog, watch our videos, or read our online resources, then you’ve already heard us talk about the life-changing benefits of the SmartVest Airway Clearance System—a high frequency chest wall oscillation (HFCWO) therapy device that delivers 360° lung coverage to help clear mucus from the lungs, that ultimately helps to prevent buildup that may lead to respiratory inflammation and infections.
If you haven’t heard about SmartVest, or maybe you’re still wondering how our therapy vest compares to others, we encourage you to keep reading to learn how real people are experiencing symptom relief, more energy, and more time to live life on their schedules, thanks in part to SmartVest.
Connie’s SmartVest Success Story
Connie, a SmartVest user since January of 2020, has graciously offered to share her story with others in hopes of inspiring those living with bronchiectasis to learn more about the benefits of airways clearance, and how SmartVest has allowed her to enjoy more freedom from her chronic lung condition.
Like many individuals living with bronchiectasis, Connie struggled with
- Acute cough
- Chest tightness
- Shortness of breath
Like many bronchiectasis patients, her treatments were not addressing the underlying issue of her condition: “My treatment included occasional antibiotics with prednisone and the use of a flutter valve,” said Connie. “But because my secretions were so thick, using the flutter valve was difficult to operate and did not decrease my acute coughing.”
Connie found that her symptoms were impacting her schedule, lifestyle, and even relationships with others: “I was never without cough drops. They were in my car, by my bedside table, in my purse, and I could “clear a room”, especially during flu season.”
But that wasn’t the only issue that Connie was dealing with: “I also have Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia. Because I developed a permanent lump in my throat, I was convinced that I had an aberrant growth on my larynx. My pulmonologist suggested that this “lump” was a result of trauma due to coughing.“
Connie knew it was time for a change and a new approach to her bronchiectasis treatment plan.
“I started using SmartVest on January 10, 2020. My protocol includes three intervals of increasing pressure and vibration, twice daily. So, I use my therapy vest in the morning and late afternoon, with the flutter valve in between the three intervals.“
Her new therapy started helping her find symptom relief right away!
“Within two weeks, I noticed a significant decrease in coughing, and when I did cough, the secretions were so much thinner that coughing become more “productive” with less effort and trauma on my throat.”
Connie’s breakthrough in her therapy routine didn’t stop there.
“In the weeks since, I also noticed that the lump in my throat is gone. So my pulmonologist was right—the lump was a result of the trauma from my excessive and extreme coughing.”
“I have also noticed an increase in my energy level, so my productivity is getting back to normal. I have discovered that I am now able to breathe more deeply without coughing. I believe that this increased oxygen intake is making my body function more effectively, thereby increasing my energy level.”
Aside from feeling more energized, breathing easier, and a noticeable decrease in coughing, Connie had this to say about how she knows SmartVest is working!
“My therapy program was interrupted last weekend when I had house guests—and my coughing increased, with greater intensity. So I am convinced that the program is quite effective if used consistently.”
Connie was also able to get back to pursuing her passions and the activities she loves most.
“When I started the program, I was asked to state a goal for what I hoped to achieve from using this airway clearance therapy device. I responded that I would like to sit through worship on Sunday morning, and once again, sing all of the hymns and read responsively without having to stop for coughing.”
“This past Sunday, I coughed only once—very lightly—and not during singing or reading. And my friends don’t move when I sit down. I have much gratitude for SmartVest.”
Ready to Experience the Difference Yourself?
Connie, we are grateful for you, and all the other SmartVest users for sharing your stories, and most importantly, for finding relief from chronic symptoms, so you can get back to living!
You can find more patient success stories, or share your own personal experience of using SmartVest.
If you’d like to learn more about vest therapy, have questions, or want to know how to make SmartVest a part of your treatment plan, our patient care advocates, who are also Respiratory Therapists, would love to chat! You can reserve a time to talk that fits your schedule or give them a call directly at 1.855.528.5690.
Have an upcoming doctor’s appointment? Request an informational packet to arrive at your door that contains more helpful information and resources to share with your family and healthcare team, including a SmartVest prescription form for your clinician to complete.
We look forward to sharing more SmartVest success stories! Subscribe to our blog to stay updated.