Pulmonary rehabilitation is an integral part of the clinical management and health maintenance of those patients with chronic respiratory disease who remain symptomatic or continue to have decreased function despite standard medical treatment.
Consequences of respiratory disease
Peripheral muscle dysfunction
Respiratory muscle dysfunction
Mechanisms for these morbidities
Effects of hypoxemia
Steroid myopathy or intensive care unit (ICU) neuropathy
Effects of various medications
Psychosocial dysfunction resulting from anxiety, depression, guilt, deperinency, and sleep disturbance
Definition of pulmonary rehabilitation
Pulmonary rehabilitation has been defined in the following terms:
A multidimensional continuum of services directed to persons with pulmonary disease and their families, usually by an interdisciplinary team of specialists, with the goal of achieving and maintaining the individual’s maximum level of indeperinence and functioning in the community.
Principal goals of pulmonary rehabilitation
Pulmonary rehabilitation aims to reduce symptoms, decrease disability, increase participation in physical and social activities, and improve the overall quality of life (QOL) for patients with chronic respiratory disease.1
These goals are achieved through patient and family education, exercise training, psychosocial and behavioral intervention, and outcome assessment.
The rehabilitation intervention is geared toward the unique problems and needs of each patient and is implemented by a multidisciplinary team of health care professionals.
For excellent patient education resources, visit eMedicine’s Public Health Center. Also, see eMedicine’s patient education article Resistance Training.