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On Being a Doctor |

Technology Transfer and Continuity of Care by a “Consultant”

Thomas L. Petty, MD
[+] Article, Author, and Disclosure Information

Denver, CO 80218 (Petty)

Requests for Single Reprints: Thomas L. Petty, MD, HealthONE, Center for Health Sciences Education, Denver, CO 80218.

Requests To Purchase Bulk Reprints (minimum, 100 copies): the Reprints Coordinator; phone, 215-351-2657; e-mail, reprints@mail.acponline.org.

Ann Intern Med. 2000;132(7):587-588. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-132-7-200004040-00012
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Even though I was taught in medical school more than 40 years ago that nothing could be done for emphysema and advanced chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, I never accepted that dogma. My beliefs were confirmed when we began to observe the tremendous clinical and physiologic benefits of long-term oxygen therapy delivered by a newly available liquid portable system. Soon, oxygen therapy became integrated into a program of pulmonary rehabilitation. Pulmonary rehabilitation was slow to take hold and was usually carried out in a program supervised by pulmonologists. As controlled clinical trials proved the value of long-term oxygen therapy in increasing the length and enhancing the quality of life, many patients in the United States and around the world benefited from it. Later, primary care physicians began to recognize the value of pulmonary rehabilitation and the role of oxygen. By the mid 1990s, it was estimated that more than 800 000 Americans received long-term oxygen therapy.





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