If your physician decides you need special respiratory care, you’ll be treated by a respiratory therapist. It’s common for patients of all ages in the emergency department, an ICU and the Step-Down unit to require respiratory treatment. 

Types of Respiratory Treatments

Medication Delivery

Medications, including bronchodilators, anti-inflamatory, mucolytics and antibiotics, can be delivered with a variety of devices. 

Lung Expansion

After surgery, you may need a lung expansion device. Some lung expansion devices encourage you to take prolonged, deeper breaths while others help you do so. 

Secretion Clearance

If you have thick secretions that you can’t expel on your own, you may need the help of a respiratory therapist. 

Advanced Respiratory Care

In noninvasive ventilation, breathing support is provided through a pressurized mask. This helps you breathe while supplying supplemental oxygen. 

Patients who require invasive ventilation receive breathing support and supplemental oxygen through a tube inserted into the throat or neck. 

If a patient’s breathing fails, intubation may be necessary. During this procedure a tube is placed in the patient’s throat to control breathing. 

If a patient experiences a code blue (sudden cardiac death or respiratory arrest), a respiratory therapist will care for the patient’s airway, perform CPR and obtain needed blood samples.