Respiratory Services

Your Respiratory Therapist

Providing Treatment to Improve Your Breathing

Department of Respiratory Care

Monmouth Medical Center
An affiliate of RWJBarnabas Health

Making Breathing Easier

For most people, breathing is effortless and occurs spontaneously. But when a medical condition or unexpected injury makes breathing difficult, treatment becomes necessary.

A respiratory therapist plays a major role on a patient's health care team, working with physicians and nurses in providing evaluation, diagnosis and treatment of breathing disorders that are caused by a variety of conditions. These include:

  • Chronic lung problems, such as asthma, bronchitis and emphysema
  • Lung cancer
  • Accidents or injuries
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Respiratory infections
  • Prematurity (for newborns)
  • Emergency respiratory care

The Role of the Respiratory Therapist

The respiratory therapist is specially trained to perform procedures to diagnose and treat breathing disorders, including:

  • Obtaining and analyzing sputum and breath specimens.
  • Taking blood specimens for analysis of oxygen, carbon dioxide (and carbide monoxide in cigarette smokers).
  • Interpreting the data taken from these specimens.
  • Measuring lung function.
  • Performing stress tests and other studies of the cardiopulmonary system.
  • Operating and maintaining highly sophisticated equipment to administer oxygen or to assist with breathing.
  • Employing mechanical ventilation for treatment of patients who suffer from lung failure.
  • Monitoring and managing therapy that will help a patient recover lung function.
  • Administering medications in aerosol form to help alleviate breathing problems.
  • Monitoring equipment and patient responses to therapy.
  • Conducting rehabilitation activities to help patients who suffer from chronic lung problems.
  • Maintaining a patient's artificial airway, which may be in place to help the patient who cannot breathe through normal means.

Respiratory Care Department 732-923-6818

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