Pulmonary rehabilitation, as performed by your physical therapists at Advantage Physical Therapy in Kalamazoo, MI, is a multidisciplinary and comprehensive response addressing patients with symptomatic chronic pulmonary disease and a restriction in activities of daily living.
It constitutes the cornerstone of the treatment of chronic pulmonary disease and manages to improve exercise capacity, dyspnea and quality of life.
The main concerned pulmonary diseases are chronic bronchitis, emphysema, pulmonary fibrosis, sarcoidosis, cystic fibrosis, asthma and bronchiectasis.
Chronic respiratory diseases have multi-system repercussions that result in functional limitations. The primary objective remains functional improvement of the patient.
Pulmonary Rehabilitation Principles
Pulmonary rehabilitation must include a functional assessment, physical training, and patient education.
Pulmonary rehabilitation can be compared to a fitness plan. It allows to manage patients individually with a multidisciplinary program conducted in 3 stages:
- Prior assessment of exercise capacity, perception of the disease, acceptance of a global care to set goals.
- Program itself, which includes three major dimensions:
- physical exercises to reduce disability and improve everyday life.
- therapeutic education to enable each patient to appropriate the evolution of the program, to set its objectives, and help maintain its gains at the end of program.
- treatment of other deleterious aspects of the disease (psychological impact, fatigue, nutritional imbalance) in order to limit their consequences.
- Management of the progress made, by maintaining physical activity and the application of principles of therapeutic education.
The effort training constitutes the major factor to improve muscle function. The physiological benefit depends on the intensity of the effort during training sessions.
Low intensity efforts succeed in improving the quality of life and increasing adherence to the program. Only high intensity efforts (> 60% of maximal exercise capacity) result in an increase of the maximum exercise capacity.
In addition, exercises to increase muscle strength must be integrated into the pulmonary rehabilitation program.
Education Principles for Pulmonary Rehabilitation
During the respiratory rehabilitation as a part of your physical therapy in Kalamazoo, MI, therapists at Advantage Physical Therapy will teach the movements necessary to a more efficient and less tiring possible breathing by increasing the mobility of the diaphragm, correcting the rhythm of breathing that must be slowed, and by training the accessory respiratory muscles.
Physical therapists at Advantage Physical Therapy in Kalamazoo, MI, work with patients on different daily activities such as climbing stairs, bathing, dressing, housekeeping, carrying loads, gardening, etc.
Patients must keep in mind to exhale during the effort even if they do not pose major difficulties.
For best results, certain conditions are necessary: imperative smoking cessation, correction of overweight or under-nutrition, practice of regular physical activity, and regular monitoring of respiratory function.