Pauline sets up support group for COPD sufferers
A WOMAN who suffers from a serious respitory condition is starting a support group in Drogheda so those who also have the disease don't have to go through it alone.
Pauline O'Neill has suffered from COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), a progressive disease that makes it hard to breathe, for the past nine years.
Although she attends a special exercise class in Our Lady of Lourdes hospital, there was no group where fellow sufferers could meet and swap tips on living with the disease.
Her first meeting will be held in the Connect Family Centre in Moneymore on Friday, February 7, at 2.30 p.m., and all who have COPD are welcome.
'I was first diagnosed with the condition nine years ago, the same year I stopped smoking,' said Pauline (58), who lives in Scarlet Street. 'I was a very heavy smoker, from when I was 18, and I found I had been getting bad chest infections for years, which wouldn't go away, and it was getting harder and harder to breathe or walk.'
Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of COPD.
'If I had my time again, I would never put a cigarette in my mouth in the first place,' she said.
'I want to say a big thank you to Connect Family House for giving us their space, and I hope to see as many local people with COPD as possible, so you don't have to go through this alone.'