Most people take breathing for granted. It's second-nature, an involuntary reflex. But for thousands of people who suffer from breathing problems, each breath is a major accomplishment. Those people include patients with chronic lung problems such as asthma, bronchitis, and emphysema and patients with neurologic disorders like multiple sclerosis or ALS.
In each case, the person requires the intervention of and treatments from a respiratory therapist. Glenwood's Respiratory Therapy department works with physicians to evaluate, treat, and care for patients with any of these disorders. They will perform both diagnostic and therapeutic procedures and work right beside you to help you reach your goals. Some of the diagnostics or treatments you might receive include:
It is important to appraise a patient's overall cardiopulmonary condition by taking a detailed medical history, exercise ability history, and learning needs assessment. Knowing the patient's overall physical, social, and nutritional status is also key. Glenwood's respiratory therapists work with you and your physician to gather this information that is specific to you.
Additionally, respiratory therapists work with physicians to analyze the capacity and the strength of a patient's lungs by performing special breathing tests and sometimes collecting sputum samples.
Glenwood's respiratory therapists will perform treatments that may include:
- Using various types of equipment that administer oxygen or assists with breathing.
- Administering medications in aerosol form ("breathing treatments") to help alleviate breathing problems and to help prevent respiratory infections.
- Monitoring and managing therapeutic exercises that help patients improve their functional capacity and improve their quality of life.
- Conducting rehab activities such as: breathing control training, energy management training, cough techniques, and relaxation/stress control.