A case report evaluated the effect of a year-long respiratory intervention, which included inspiratory muscle training and positive expiratory pressure therapy, for a person with C3-C4 tetraplegia. The intervention improved both inspiratory muscle force and pulmonary function values. Respiratory infections, frequency of suctioning and physiotherapy treatment time decreased progressively throughout the intervention. There were no admissions to the acute care hospital after the interventions began. This intervention improved the participant's health and well being and reduced costs to the health care system1.
Results of another study indicated that training of the respiratory muscles results in an enhanced endurance capacity of these muscles and a concomitant increase in the aerobic exercise performance2.
And in another study findings suggest that Resistive Inspiratory Muscle Training (RIMT) can enhance the respiratory muscle strength and endurance of chronic tetraplegia and further ameliorate the sleep-induced breathing disorder. Therefore, RIMT is suggested as a home program for patients with sleep-disordered breathing3.
1 Respiratory training for a person with C3-C4 tetraplegia
2 Training of the respiratory muscles in individuals with tetraplegia
3 Resistive inspiratory muscle training in sleep-disordered breathing of traumatic tetraplegia