Inspiratory capacity is diminished in persons with higher level lesions of spinal cord injury (SCI), which contributes to microatelectasis, dyspnea with exertion, and, in those with more severe impairments, respiratory insufficiency . Muscles of expiration are impaired in many individuals with spinal cord injury (eg, injury >T8) with profound effects on cough effectiveness and, presumably, on clearance of secretions and susceptibility to lower respiratory tract infections . In persons with SCI, quality of life (QoL) is diminished by respiratory symptoms that include cough, phlegm, and wheezing [2, 3].
Although there has been some work examining QoL and participation in persons who are ventilator-dependent [4-8], there is a need for a better understanding how respiratory complications impact QoL considering that they are a leading cause of mortality .
RESPIRATORY HEALTH RESOURCES
Spinal Cord Essentials – is a patient education initiative which aims help people through rehabilitation following SCI. Below is a downloable PDFs of the lung volume augmentation handout.
5. Bushnik T. Access to equipment, participation, and quality of life in aging individuals with high tetraplegia (C1-4). Top Spinal Cord Inj Rehabil 2002;7:17-27.
6. Bushnik T, Charlifue S. Longitudinal study of individuals with high tetraplegia (C1-C4) 14 to 24 years postinjury. Top Spinal Cord Inj Rehabil 2005;10:79-93.
8. Warschausky S, Dixon P, Forchheimer M, Nelson VS, Park C, Gater D, Tate D. Quality of life in persons with long-term mechanical ventilation or tetraplegic SCI without LTMV. Top Spinal Cord Inj Rehabil 2005;10:94-101.
Page last updated May 12, 2013