Lung disease and COPD are treated with a variety of measures, including oxygen and medications. If patients are not able to breathe adequately on their own, then machines may be used to help assist or take over the work of breathing until they are able. The goal is always to have the patient off of machines as quickly as possible. The longer the patient is on the machines, the weaker the breathing muscles become. In addition to medications and machines, some other therapies include asking the patient to take deep breaths and to cough frequently, which helps to open the tiny air sacs and to move mucous out of the airways. Another therapy is as simple as turning the patient from side to side to help encourage the lungs to work more effectively. Lastly, sitting the patient up in bed or in the bedside chair is a therapy that helps to strengthen the muscles used for breathing and balance and help the lungs expand more effectively.
- Q Can the family visit their loved one in the ICU?
- Q What critical care professionals oversee a person's case in the ICU?
- Q Why do some ICU patients need a nasograstric tube?
- Q How is ultrasound used in the ICU?
- Q Is critical care given in the ICU?
- Q What is basic life support that's provided on the ambulance?