A case is described of a 67 year old obese white woman who had a history of multiple medical problems and who was in chronic respiratory failure but responded poorly to intermittent positive pressure breathing, chest physiotherapy, and supplementary oxygen. She was treated successfully with a 600 k.cal diet and a 26-day physical reconditioning programme. Reconditioning techniques included free and treadmill walking, stair climbing, bench stepping, light calisthenics, and breathing retraining. Improvements were noticed in blood gases, spirometry, electrocardiogram, motor coordination, and physical working capacity.
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