Pulmonary Rehab Now Available at LRH
Lakes Regional Healthcare (LRH) now offers outpatient pulmonary rehabilitation, which is a program designed to help patients breathe easier and improve their quality of life. Pulmonary rehabilitation is used for patients that often experience being short of breath, coughing, and wheezing. Usually these people have one or more of the following:
• Chronic bronchitis
• Cystic fibrosis
• A neuromuscular disease, such as Multiple Sclerosis or Parkinson’s Disease
• Lung cancer
• A history of smoking
• Previous lung surgery
Pulmonary rehabilitation has two parts: exercise training to help regain strength and education to help manage lung conditions. Upon entering the program, patients receive an extensive interview and various tests may be conducted. Tests may include a pulmonary function test, six-minute walk test, or a simple physical assessment. After a customized exercise program is tailored to meet the patient’s needs, they may meet with other pulmonary rehabilitation patients for two hours twice per week. The sessions last eight to twelve weeks.
At each session, the patient exercises according to their personalized care plan. Staff monitors the patient’s heart rate, blood pressure, how much oxygen gets into the blood, and the patient’s perceived exertion and shortness of breath. During the sessions, the patient also receives education from hospital personnel on a variety of topics related to their program. Upon completion of the program, a home based exercise program is set up so the patient can continue to maintain the progress achieved and healthy living habits.
LRH Director of Clinical Services Jeff Messerole said, “We think people will be happy to have this service offered. Pulmonary rehabilitation is a great way to make a positive difference in people’s lives by helping them breathe better, increase their strength, decrease stress, and reduce the risks of future lung problems.”
Those interested in more information are encouraged to contact their healthcare provider.