The Cardiopulmonary Services Department at MMC is staffed by 9 Registered Respiratory Therapists. The department has two distinct but related services lines, specifically Respiratory Care and Cardiac and Pulmonary diagnostics. The Respiratory Care group provides emergency airway management and ventilator support for critically ill patients in the Emergency Department and Intensive Care Unit.
The Respiratory Therapists also provide breathing treatments, devices and education for persons with asthma, emphysema, chronic bronchitis, pneumonia, influenza, RSV, croup and other lung conditions for inpatients and outpatients of all ages. Finally, they monitor and assist patients after surgery to prevent postoperative pulmonary complications. There is a Certified Asthma Educator on staff for one on one discussion of asthma triggers, medications and management plans.
The Cardiac and Pulmonary diagnostic group provide a wide variety of testing. Three types of cardiac stress tests are offered in order to detect coronary artery disease before it causes a permanent lost of heart muscle from a heart attack. There is a type of stress test for persons of all levels of fitness including those that cannot walk at all. There are portable heart monitors and blood pressure monitors that patients take home and wear for 1-30 days to help determine why they are experiencing palpitations, dizziness, sudden loss of consciousness, shortness of breath, etc. These monitors are small, portable, and easily worn during daily activities to monitor physiologic parameters in real life situations.
MMC has a comprehensive Pulmonary Function laboratory which permits the testing and early diagnosis of a wide variety of lung disease including asthma, emphysema, chronic bronchitis, asbestosis, fibrotic lung disease, COPD, as well as lung disease that results from environmental and occupational irritants and smoking. Portable pulse oximetry is available for patients to take home and monitor blood oxygen levels during the night as a screening tool for obstructive sleep apnea. Finally, EEGs (electroencephalograms) are performed for persons with possible seizure activity, headaches, black outs, head trauma, staring or absence spells in children, and evaluating the patient’s response to medication.
A physician’s order is required for all services.