Why are respiratory therapy and pulmonary rehabilitation important?

Respiratory therapy takes proven strategies and applies them to patients in need of immediate respiratory care. It is a composition of methods that provides solutions for hospital patients with lung and breathing problems.

In conjunction with other healthcare staff, the respiratory therapist works and coordinates a course of action to bring patient breathing levels back to normal. This usually happens after surgery but can occur if a person suffers from lung and airway disorders, mesothelioma, asthma, or other lung disorders. The goal of a respiratory therapist is to ensure that a patient’s breathing functions are operating at the highest levels of performance.

One of the most commonly integrated curriculums used in respiratory therapy is pulmonary rehabilitation. Pulmonary rehabilitation is a system of physical activity, education, and support utilized to breathe and function at the highest degree possible. Patients will be shown techniques by one or more respiratory therapists to help improve the patient’s breathing and help them live a more normal life.

They will show how to effectively manage their cardiovascular and/or respiratory condition so the patient can maintain their health even after the program. The patient’s support team will conduct an entire background check of medical history, discuss present level of exercise, and help establish milestones for their respiratory therapy.

Monitoring their heart rates, blood pressure, and oxygen levels can do this. This is done to ensure that patients are not pushed too far but will still achieve the benefits of focused respiratory exercises.

The introduction of new concepts

Patients will learn concepts that will serve them far after treatment is finished. Respiratory therapists will discuss breathing strategies, dietary suggestions, medication, relaxation exercises, oxygen, blood circulation, and how to manage daily tasks with minimal to no shortness of breath. In brief, it will help those with breathing problems to not only lessen their immediate symptoms but also maintain their breathing in the future.

Moreover, pulmonary rehabilitation teaches coping mechanisms as a therapeutic solution for dealing with respiratory conditions such as depression, anxiety and panic. Lastly, patients will be part of a supportive community of teachers and colleagues all focused on maximizing their health.

Identifying new challenges

All in all, it is more of a challenge to identify how concepts such as respiratory therapy and pulmonary rehabilitation are not important. These methods are focused on bringing a person’s breathing activity back to an optimal state. It can be done following surgery or for those suffering from a cardiovascular/respiratory condition. This program offers support and education that will benefit their health for years to come.

Reynolds Memorial Hospital has registered respiratory therapists on staff who can treat patients with deficiencies and abnormalities of the cardiopulmonary system and perform diagnostic tests such as arterial blood gas analysis and complete pulmonary functioning.

For more information about our respiratory therapy and pulmonary rehabilitation services, contact Pam Zorn, RT, director, at 304-843-3318.