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Lung Center

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) Program

A World-Leading COPD Research and Treatment Center

One of the world’s most respected research and treatment centers for COPD, Temple’s comprehensive COPD Program has a decades-long history of offering innovative treatments for patients who may have been told they have run out of options. Gerard Criner, MD, director of the Temple Lung Center, is a recognized thought leader in COPD research and has helped to write many of the COPD treatment guidelines used by physicians worldwide.

Temple Sets the Standard for COPD Care

It’s estimated that more than 16 million people in the U.S. are diagnosed with COPD. Of those, more than 140,000 people die from complications of the disease each year.

Over the years, the Lung Center has made great strides in overcoming the burden of this disease by:

  • Committing to the discovery of new and innovative COPD therapies
  • Sharing knowledge and education with lung specialists all over the world
  • Setting the standard for COPD prevention, diagnosis, treatment and management through its involvement in the development of The Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD) guidelines.

It’s these efforts that set the standard for COPD care not only in the U.S., but across the globe.

Here are some reasons why thousands of patients each year choose Temple for the treatment of their COPD:

  • U.S. News & World Report recognizes Temple as a High Performer in COPD, a ranking that reflects the program’s dedication to the care and treatment of patients living with this challenging disease.
  • The Lung Center is part of the American Lung Association Airways Clinical Research Center, a prestigious group of programs dedicated to the treatment of airway diseases such as COPD.
  • Our involvement in the clinical trials conducted by The Pulmonary Trials Cooperative, which is funded by the National Institutes of Health, helps forge new and innovative therapies for patients with COPD.
  • We are ranked among the top 10% of hospitals in the nation for pulmonology and lung surgery by U.S. News & World Report.
  • We lead the nation in bronchoscopic lung volume reduction (BLVR), a breakthrough treatment for patients with advanced emphysema, a type of COPD.
  • We have one of the highest volume lung transplantation programs in the nation, with the ability to offer lung transplant for even the most advanced COPD cases.
  • Dr. Criner and the Lung Center team co-host with the Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD) one of the largest professional COPD symposiums in the world. This yearly event brings the brightest minds in lung research and clinical care together to solve some of the toughest challenges in treating this disease. Through presentation and discussion of the latest COPD guidelines, research and advancements, specialists stay at the forefront of innovation to give patients the best care possible.

Advanced Care in a State-of-the-Art Setting

Temple Lung Center lobby, located in the Ambulatory Care Center at Temple University Hospital – Main Campus.

Our primary treatment facilities at Temple University Hospital – Main Campus and Temple University Hospital – Jeanes Campus are state-of-the-art facilities specifically designed for patients with complex lung disease. Doctor appointments, services and many of the medical tests required are offered in these spacious, patient-friendly locations.

These facilities are equipped with:

  • Oxygen hookups
  • Carpet-free flooring for easy wheelchair access
  • Onsite rehabilitation center

These beautiful facilities help the Lung Center provide a level of satisfaction and comfort that is equal to its level of medical care. For your convenience, we also see patients at our Temple Health Oaks and Temple Lung Center at Chestnut Hill locations.

Helping COPD Patients Breathe Easier with Personalized Care

There is no “one-size-fits-all” care plan at the Temple Lung Center. Rather, our COPD team looks at each patient and creates a unique treatment plan that is tailored to each patient. This attention to detail extends to educating patients about their disease so that they are empowered to make good choices for the management and treatment of their condition.

Dr. Gerard Criner performing a procedure to treat COPD.

Physicians at Temple provide a wide variety of treatments for COPD, including:

Patients also have access to emerging therapies through clinical trials.

Temple additionally provides a variety of educational events, smoking cessation assistance and support groups. These resources support patients’ emotional health, along with helping them better understand their disease, treatment options and prognosis.

Changing Lives Through Groundbreaking Research

A distinguished feature of the Temple Lung Center is an active and innovative research program — one of the busiest in the nation. Our doctors and scientists are leaders in finding safer and more effective therapies for COPD. This robust research program gives patients access to clinical trials that are not found at most hospitals.

Clinical trials for lung disease video cover
Learn about clinical trials and their importance in the treatment of lung disease such as COPD.
Learn about clinical trials and their importance in the treatment of lung disease such as COPD.

Bronchoscopic lung volume reduction (BLVR) is one of many innovative research breakthroughs led by Dr. Criner and his team. Designed for patients with a type of COPD called advanced emphysema, this minimally invasive procedure uses a tube called a bronchoscope to place small valves into your airways. These valves release trapped air to reduce shortness of breath for patients who struggle to do everyday activities such as walking, bathing or getting dressed.

Prior to FDA approval of BLVR, treatment for patients with COPD was limited to medications, oxygen therapy and surgery. Temple was the first in the nation to perform the BLVR procedure, and continues to be the world leader in the testing and use of endobronchial valves for BLVR. We’re also a national training site for pulmonologists who come from across the nation to learn how to implant the valves. This groundbreaking procedure is an important option for patients with advanced emphysema. The Lung Center has some of the best outcomes in the nation for performing BLVR.

The Lung Center is a leading center for COPD research and is involved in a high volume of clinical trials that are studying new medications, devices and techniques designed to treat COPD. Almost every COPD patient at Temple is eligible for at least one clinical trial.

Request an appointment with a pulmonologist or call 800-TEMPLE-MED (800-836-7536) today.