Respiratory Therapy

The Eastern Oklahoma Medical Center Respiratory Department encompasses activities in diagnostic evaluation, therapy and education of the patient, family and public. Respiratory Therapists and respiratory therapy technicians, also known as Respiratory Care Practitioners ( RCPs)-evaluate, treat and care for patients with breathing or other lung and heart disorders. RCPs, like nurses in the hospital, do treatments as well as testing. RCPs will consult with physicians and other healthcare workers to help develop and modify a patient’s care. Respiratory therapists use considerable independent judgement caring for patients on life support in hospital intensive care units.

To evaluate patients, RCPs interview them, perform limited physical exams and conduct diagnostic tests. For example, respiratory therapists test patients’ breathing capacity and determine the concentration of oxygen and other gases in the patients blood.

Who do we treat?

RCPs at EOMC treat all types of patients, ranging from premature infants- whose lungs are not fully developed- to elderly persons whose lungs are unhealthy. Respiratory therapists provide temporary relief to patients with asthma or emphysema (also known as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease OR COPD). RCPs give life-saving care to patients who are victims of a heart attack, stroke, drowning, vehicle accidents or shock. Therapists spend much of their time carefully checking on patients and equipment. If a patient appears to be having difficulty breathing, or if an “artery blood test” is abnormal, therapists change the vent settings to help the body get better. In-home care is often taught to patients and their families to use the ventilators and other life support systems at home if the patient gets better but can’t breathe on their own
for some reason.

Therapists also perform chest treatments on patients to help remove mucus from their lungs and make it easier for them to breathe. For example, during surgery, anesthesia depresses respiration, so chest therapy may be prescribed to help get the patient’s lungs back to normal and to prevent congestion or even pneumonia. Chest treatments also help patients suffering from lung diseases, such as cystic fibrosis, that causes mucus to collect in the lungs.

Cardiopulmonary Services

Eastern Oklahoma Medical Center’s Cardiopulmonary Services are designed to help patients with heart and lung disease recover quicker and return to full and productive lives. Listed below are the types of specialty procedures that Eastern Oklahoma Medical Center’s Cardiopulmonary Department provides:

• Breathing Treatments
• Pulmonary Function Tests
• EKGs
• Holter Monitors
• Arterial Blood Gases
• Continuous Positive Airway Pressure
• Bi-Level Positive Airway Pressure
• Life Support Ventilation