Pulmonary or respiratory rehabilitation includes all measures that serve to restore the optimal function of the respiratory organs.
This mainly concerns patients who have been seriously ill with Covid-19. While most patients do not suffer from any after effects from a Covid-19 infection, some patients, for example patients with pre-existing conditions or age-related susceptibility of the respiratory tract, require a special therapy programme to strengthen the performance of the affected organs.
After Covid-19, various secondary symptoms can occur and, in the worst cases, even persist. These include pulmonary deconditioning, musculoskeletal disorders, sliding syndrome, brain damage, peripheral polyneuropathy (damage to the peripheral nerves) and fatigue.
First, an individual assessment is carried out to evaluate the patient's current state of health, abilities and deficits. Various exercises are used to determine what difficulties these cause in the patient's daily life.
Our rehabilitation programmes last from three to six weeks, depending on the therapy goals and the patient's clinical condition, and are aimed at regaining respiratory, motor and cognitive abilities.
The therapy goals are set by a multidisciplinary team of medical specialists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, speech therapists, neuropsychologists and nursing staff.
A specific therapy programme is designed for the patient and adapted to the clinical condition and specific needs.
Physiotherapy plays an important role in pulmonary rehabilitation. Special breathing techniques are used to train patients how to increase their breathing volume. Special techniques are also used to stimulate coughing so that secretions can be expelled.
In the case of cardiorespiratory problems, when the muscles and heart cannot be supplied with enough oxygen, various mobility and strengthening exercises are performed to rebuild impaired endurance.
Occupational therapy aims to help the patient gradually regain independence in activities of daily living.
Goals of occupational therapy:
After a long stay in hospital, some patients suffer from cognitive disorders, such as memory, concentration and speech difficulties.
Our neuropsychological examinations and individual care are part of the therapy to restore the impaired cognitive functions as far as possible.
This enables the patient to resume activities of daily living after returning home.
If intubation was performed due to Covid-19, secondary symptoms such as swallowing and voice disorders may occur. In this case, speech therapy is carried out. The aim is to restore the patient's swallowing reflex and normal voice.