Ventilator Weaning Programs
Shepherd Center's ventilator services program is led by an experienced and aggressive team of respiratory therapists, pulmonologists and an intensivist who work to wean patients off ventilators whenever possible.
A high degree of patients with an injury at the C3 level or below have the potential to be weaned from the ventilator. Yet, before we recommend ventilator weaning, our staff evaluates each patient's physical and psychological state.
Modalities such as biofeedback can be used in some instances to retrain the weakened muscles. The goal is not only to help them off the ventilator, but to also teach them how to live an active and productive life.
Shepherd Center began ventilator-weaning not long after its inception in 1975, and at any given time, we are working with 10-12 patients on ventilators.
For patients who remain ventilator dependent, Shepherd focuses on educating the patient on how to live an active lifestyle. We believe that being ventilator dependent doesn't mean you have to stop enjoying life.
At Shepherd, patients on ventilators begin wheelchair mobility as early as the patient can tolerate room air. Prior to leaving Shepherd, patients participate in community outings to help them become comfortable using their equipment outside the center and in the community environment.
Shepherd Center's staff also trains each patient and their family members in home care techniques and health management. Patients and their families receive detailed information educating them about the process.