A Guide to Cardiopulmonary Physical Therapy

Cardiopulmonary Physical Therapy (PT) has to do with the heart and lungs. This type of physical therapy is used for medical conditions that cause trouble breathing. But what is cardiopulmonary PT and what can it help?

What is Cardiopulmonary Physical Therapy?
This type of physical therapy focuses on the physical function of the cardiopulmonary system. This system is comprised of the lungs and heart. Cardiopulmonary PT combines exercise training with education. You will work on your chest and postural drainage techniques to help control symptoms of your condition, make daily activities easier, and to help your breathing.

Medical Conditions PT Can Help
Some conditions that can benefit from Life Fitness PT’s cardiopulmonary physical therapy program are COPD, emphysema, asthma, chronic bronchitis, pulmonary fibrosis, thoracotomy, bronchiectasis, thoracic cage abnormalities, lung cancer, sarcoidosis, and lung transplants. One condition that can benefit from this type of PT is pulmonary fibrosis (PF), a condition that affects the lungs. PF is when the lung tissue becomes thickened, stiff, and is scarred. The blood vessels and alveoli in the lung’s tissue becomes hard, making it difficult to deliver the oxygen into the bloodstream. This condition’s side effects include difficulty breathing, persistent but unproductive cough, shortness of breath, fatigue, fevers, muscular and joint pain, and weight loss. Cardiopulmonary PT can help optimize the lung’s capacities and volumes, help with the patients physical endurance, strengthen muscles, and help improve the patients quality of life.

Another condition that can be helped with cardiopulmonary PT is Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). This disease causes difficulty breathing as well as other systemic problems. It is the 10th most prevalent disease in the world. COPD causes the airways in your lungs to lose their normal shape and elasticity and become inflamed. The airways become less efficient at moving air in and out of your lungs. It is often caused by smoking, inhaling toxic substances, pollutants, and genetic or environment interactions. There are two different kinds of COPD: chronic bronchitis and emphysema. Chronic bronchitis is the inflammation of the bronchi, or medium-sized airway, in your lungs. It causes persistent coughing that produces phlegm and mucus. Emphysema is a condition where the alveoli (small air sacs) in your lungs are damaged and make it difficult to get oxygen. It results in a shortness of breath and a chronic cough. People with COPD can experience weakness in limbs, balance problems, and weight gains or losses. Cardiopulmonary PT can help increase the ability to exercise, strengthen muscles, help your balance, and expand your lung functions.

These conditions and more can be helped with cardiopulmonary physical therapy. The Life Fitness Physical Therapy team will work with licensed Respiratory Therapists to help develop a treatment plan that is right for you. For more information on our cardiopulmonary PT or our other programs, contact Life Fitness PT today!

Contact Us to Learn More About Our Cardiopulmonary Physical Therapy Services
If you’d like to schedule an appointment to help with your aches and pains, call Life Fitness Physical Therapy today at 410-368-1026, or find a location online. If you’d like more information about what to expect on your first visit with us, please check out our FAQ page.