When it comes to chests, Sayed knows about it

Conversation with Dr Samana Sayed from India, an international renowned Chest Physiotherapist, with a very rich experience. She has received around 40 Health awards, treated more than 10,000 patients for Chest Physiotherapy and taught around 30,000 physiotherapists globally till date in pulmonary rehabilitation.

We would like her to enlighten us today about the significance and the increased need of consulting a Chest Physiotherapist in today’s era.

• Why should someone visit a Chest Physiotherapist?

Chest or Cardiorespiratory Physiotherapy is a branch of physiotherapy that specializes in the Prevention, Rehabilitation and Maintenance of patients with diseases and injuries in the heart and lungs.

It helps in treating patients with the symptoms of shortness of breath/ breathlessness, persistent cough, clearing lungs, increased work of breathing, reduced ability to exercise or do daily activities caused due to diseases like asthma, bronchitis, COPD, Post Covid19 disease, lung fibrosis, lung injuries, before and after lung or heart surgeries, etc and improving their overall quality of life.

We are an integral part of the medical team for the patients admitted in the ICU on or off the ventilators with various diseases. We help the patients from the ICU to get back to their normal and occupational activities. Chest physiotherapists have broken the ‘MYTH’ that patients with heart diseases, asthma or any other lung disorders cannot live a normal life, play sports, or pursue general activities.

You will be surprised to know that the way you strengthen the muscles of various parts of the body, you can also strengthen your lungs and heart. It’s astounding to know that you can do ‘Weight and Resistance’ training for your lungs and heart muscles as well but of course, under continuous monitoring and supervision of a Cardiopulmonary Physiotherapist.

We not only help you recover by diagnosing the root cause of your condition, but we also assess your daily activities with precise assessment tools and help you to modify your lifestyle to maintain the progress. Not only for major diseases, but patients with breathing difficulties from unknown causes can also be benefited with Chest Rehabilitation.

• Why is it more important to be aware about

Chest physiotherapy after Covid-19 pandemic? Covid-19 pandemic has been an eye opener for the entire world about the importance of Lung and Heart health not just in patients but also in normal individuals. We have always been quite concerned about our heart but awareness towards our lung’s health was lacking, which we realized right after the pandemic hit us.

More than that, it was an eye opener for everyone about the very important field of Physiotherapy which was known by a very small population in India, Africa and many other countries.

Chest physiotherapy is an integral part of treatment for any lung disease, heart disease, improving respiratory health of a normal person and most importantly in conditions like Post Covid rehabilitation ited Tanzania multiple times, where do you think we lack in terms of lung or heart health? As I have mentioned above, we are still lacking the awareness of Lung/Pulmonary health as compared to Cardiac/Heart health.

I have been trying my best to spread awareness about pulmonary health since more than a decade by conducting health talks, camps, TV shows, interviews in leading newspapers of different countries, and tried to reach the masses as much as I could and maybe even more, but it wasn’t sufficient until this pandemic.

So yes, I won’t be wrong when I say that it took a pandemic to make people understand the importance of Lung health and Chest Physiotherapy which differs from your regular Yogic breathing exercises. So just remember that deep breathing is not always helpful and what you find on the internet is not always trustworthy! You have to go beyond that by consulting a team medical professional which includes a Cardiopulmonary/ Chest Physiotherapist as well.

• Is Chest Physiotherapy only for patients or for normal individuals too?

Chest Physiotherapy is for me, you, and everyone. We as a Chest Physiotherapist assess your body, environmental factors, lifestyle, eating habits, mental health, musculoskeletal and Neuro aspects and then accordingly design a cardiorespiratory fitness training program for you so that you can gain maximum benefit and improve your overall Pulmonary and Cardiac fitness even if you are a normal individual with no diseases in particular.

• Is walking enough to keep up with your Lung and Heart health?

No! What if you have knee arthritis and you are not walking enough to meet up your cardiorespiratory fitness? What if you are exerting more than required and simply loading up your cardiovascular system? What if you don’t know how much walking is required or your walking pattern is incorrect and is rather putting more load on your muscles of respiration? I hope that clearly answers your question.

• Since you travel across the world to teach and treat, what difference do you find in the cardiorespiratory fitness of different countries?

Cardiorespiratory fitness differs in terms of age, body mass index, weather, environmental factors, staple diet, lifestyle, and many other factors. So, for treating or teaching people to improve or work on their cardiorespiratory fitness, you can never have a fixed protocol. It varies for each and every individual depending on all the above factors.

• Lastly, a personal question. How do you feel after gaining recognition at such a young age?

From where did you get the motivation to do so much in a field about which not many are aware of, with such enthusiasm? I am sure this would definitely help empower our readers, especially women, to hustle for their aspirations.

Honestly, I never aimed for recognition or fame. I just focused on working diligently, bridging the gap, and spreading awareness about the lesser known but immensely important field of Cardiopulmonary Physiotherapy.

I believe that the moment you start questioning your robustness as a woman, you unconsciously inhibit your strength and limit yourself. Besides, women are meant to be stronger and determined and all we must do is to put up all this energy towards our passion.

An urge to fill the gap in the society is what got me here and a passion to stand out in the crowd is what made me come up with new objectives always. I am a sole fighter and a onewoman army. If you can tolerate menstrual pain every month and can very well bear labour, then trust me girl, sky is not the limit!

My three-point belief is to work ethically, honestly, and passionately. You can consult me online on the email id mentioned below as we provide online treatment worldwide for all such patients. Breathe healthy!

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