(Respiratory failure, ventilator care/weaning, high-frequency suction, tracheostomy, decannulation, cardiac anomalies)

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Cardio/Pulmonary Care

Suffering from any complex illness is challenging enough, but children experiencing any level of respiratory failure face greater obstacles. Pediatric cardiopulmonary care is required when there are any indications of respiratory failure. Because ensuring adequate oxygen is an important part of assessing the critically ill patient, basic heart and pulmonary function tests are a fundamental aspect of developing an individualized care plan.

HealthBridge Pediatric Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation Services

At HealthBridge Children’s, our experienced care team offers highly-advanced respiratory care and rehabilitation in a child-friendly, community based setting. The goal of our pediatric cardiopulmonary rehabilitation team, led by board-certified pulmonologists and cardiologists, is to provide every possible medical and therapeutic means to enable these children to return to home, school and other basic community activities as soon as possible.

Respiratory failure is a serious condition that results from inadequate exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide. These low levels usually create serious health problems, including coma and death. In children, respiratory failure can be caused by a variety of conditions, including lung disease (asthma, COPD, cancer, lung collapse), airway obstruction and neuromuscular disorders.

Service Lines

  • Ventilator Care/Weaning. When a child suffers from respiratory failure, he/she will probably need additional breathing assistance. For those that cannot maintain spontaneous breathing, this is typically done through a ventilator. While ventilator care is essential, ventilator weaning is especially important because the length of time on mechanical ventilation is correlated with other serious complications such as airway trauma and ventilator-associated pneumonia. At HealthBridge, the chance for infection is significantly less due to expert airway care by our nurses and respiratory therapists.
  • High-frequency suction. High frequency suction is often used as an alternative strategy when conventional mechanical ventilation is unsuccessful. With this technique, suctioning the secretions from the airways is done through ongoing vibrations applied to the chest wall through a vest. This approach also helps remove mucus and secretions in the airways.
  • Tracheostomy/Decannulation. A tracheostomy is a surgical airway management procedure in which an incision is made in the front of the neck and a tube is then inserted in the trachea. This is another technique used for children who have serious respiratory difficulties and provides an alternative to a ventilator. Decannulation is the process of removing the tracheostomy tube to allow normal breathing through the mouth and nose again.
  • Cardiac Anomalies. Cardiac anomalies, also known as congenital heart defects or congenital heart disease, is a defect present in the structure of the heart or surrounding vessels at birth. These anomalies can have a number of symptoms, especially in babies and children, including: rapid breathing, rapid heartbeat, blue tinge to the skin or lips, rapid breathing when a baby is feeding, and extreme tiredness. Children with congenital heart defects may be treated through medication management, surgery and lifestyle changes.

At HealthBridge Children’s, we understand how helpless you feel upon watching your child suffer with respiratory issues. Our highly-trained and experienced cardiopulmonary experts are here to help through developing an individualized care plan that may consist of any of the protocols discussed here including all levels of respiratory therapy — ventilator care, tracheostomy care, high frequency suction and medication management. Our goal is to wean your child off of these protocols and send them home with open airways and no respiratory distress.

HealthBridge…Where specialized care begins and hope never ends