Chapter 2 – A Day in the Life

“Playing the Cards Life has Dealt”

My day begins by doing a breathing treatment along with airway clearance.  I used the ThAIRapy Vest up until July of 2010.  I received the Respritech-Smart Incourage Vest in July of 2010.  They are both a device and system for clearing excess mucus from lung airways (bronchi and bronchioles).  It uses a compressor to inflate and deflate the vest rhythmically at timed intervals and thus imposes high frequency chest wall oscillations that are transferred to the lungs. These oscillations thin thixotropic airway mucus, facilitating its removal by coughing.

 (Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ThAIRapy_Vest)

I use a nebulizer to inhale my aerosolized medications.  I do breathing treatments four times a day.  I like to call it “smoking my pipe” and doing the “shake shake.”  Breathing treatments take anywhere from fifteen to thirty minutes, possibly longer depending on what medicines I am inhaling.

Postural drainage and chest percussion (PD & P) also called postural drainage and clapping (PD & C) is another airway clearance technique.  We like to call clapping, “beating,” no not in a bad way but that is basically what is happening when doing PD & C.  There a few other ways to do airway clearance such as; the Flutter Valve, Accapella, Incentive Spirometer, percussor (“vibrator”), Intrapulmonary Percussive Ventilation (IPV), The Frequencer, breathing and coughing exercises.  The goal of airway clearance is to loosen up the secretions in the lungs and make them easier to cough out.

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