Respiratory Therapy

Assessing the health of your lungs

If you’re having trouble breathing, your health care provider may refer you to Huggins Hospital’s Cardio-Pulmonary Department for assessment. 

Our respiratory therapists evaluate and treat many kinds of lung ailments including asthma, emphysema, COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) and other lung-related illnesses.

Common respiratory therapy assessments include:

  • Spirometry - a very basic, simple test in which you blow into a machine that measures how much air you can inhale and exhale, and how quickly you can inhale and exhale.
  • Arterial Blood Gas Test - as the name implies, in this test, blood is drawn from an artery to analyze its carbon dioxide and oxygen content.
  • Pulse Oximetry - a quick, painless test in which a sensor is placed on your finger to measure how much oxygen is circulating in your "capillaries" – your smallest blood vessels.
  • Body Plethysmography - the "gold standard" for evaluating pulmonary disease, since it can detect lung problems that more basic pulmonary tests may miss. For this test, you’ll sit inside a "body box" – an airtight chamber – and breathe into a very sensitive machine that can analyze in great detail just how your lungs are functioning.

In addition to administering the above tests, Huggins’ respiratory therapists help inpatients and outpatients with ventilators, respirators and nebulizer treatments. In addition, we administer electroencephalograms (EEGs), which record the brain’s electrical impulses in a report that is then analyzed by a neurologist.

If you have any questions about these services, please call our Cardio-Pulmonary Department at 603.569.7567.