Tag Archives: physiotherapy

Physiotherapy in Intensive Care

Historically, respiratory physiotherapy has been considered as an integral part of the daily rehabilitation of the intensive care unit (ICU) patient. However, not since 2000 has there been a specific evaluation of the various physiotherapy modalities available. Kathy Stiller, PhD, conducted a systematic review to evaluate evidence appearing over the last 13 years either supporting or refuting the role of physiotherapy in the care of the adult, intubated ICU patient.

The review is deliberately broad, encompassing clinical studies as well as expert opinion pieces and surveys. A literature review focused on papers published between 1999 and 2012 and accessible through PubMed, MEDLINE, CINAHL, Embase, the Physiotherapy Evidence Database and the Cochrane Library databases. The broad criteria naturally resulted in culling studies with variable study designs and outcomes, hence precluding a meta-analysis. Eighty-five new studies were identified including 12 focused systematic literature reviews. The identified trials evaluated several physiotherapy interventions including multimodality respiratory physiotherapy (an umbrella term encompassing diverse interventions such as manual or ventilator hyperinflation, positioning, chest wall vibrations, and rib-cage compression), mobilization, inspiratory muscle training and neuromuscular electrical stimulation. Read more…