Better breathing with advanced respiratory care

respiratory-fail-2023-200x200If you have pulmonary problems or suffer from a chronic lung disease, Saint Vincent Hospital can help you breathe easier. Designed to improve your quality of life, services include:

  • Expert respiratory care available for adult, pediatric and neonatal patients
  • Comprehensive diagnostic testing and treatment for conditions such as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), emphysema, pulmonary fibrosis, chronic bronchitis and asthma
  • Adult outpatient pulmonary rehabilitation program stressing education and monitored exercise sessions

At Saint Vincent, you have access to highly skilled inpatient and outpatient respiratory care. The hospital’s specialized respiratory team is committed to providing you with a comprehensive treatment program for a range of lung conditions and diseases. This commitment begins with your initial visit and continues through your follow-up care.

Pulmonary Laboratory

The Pulmonary Laboratory works hand in hand with Saint Vincent physicians and the community to help diagnose lung disorders. The lab works with you and your loved ones on both an inpatient and outpatient basis. Respiratory therapists and pulmonary function technologists perform the tests.

The laboratory offers a variety of state-of-the-art tests, including:

  • Pulmonary Function Testing (PFT), the primary method used to diagnose, stage and monitor various pulmonary diseases
  • Methacholine Challenge Testing, a bronchial test used to assist in the evaluation of asthma
  • High Altitude Simulation Testing, for people with COPD who either live at higher altitudes or who plan to fly on commercial airlines
  • Exercise Oximetry, to determine the need for supplemental oxygen with exercise
  • Arterial Blood Gas Sampling, which monitors the severity and progression of a pulmonary disease process
  • Electromagnetic navigation bronchoscopy, which aids in the diagnosis of a wide range of lung conditions
Our Pulmonary Lab is open Monday-Friday from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. For more information, please call (508) 363-3140.

Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program

The goal of Saint Vincent’s Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program is to return you to daily activities, with less shortness of breath. When you are accepted into the program, you will benefit from:

  • A 7- to 10-week outpatient program
  • Education in the anatomy and physiology of the lungs, respiratory medication, stress management and nutrition
  • Monitored exercise sessions that focus on breath retraining and posture

Admission requirements for the program are:

  • A physician referral (HMO insurance first requires referral to a pulmonologist)
  • A diagnosis of COPD, chronic bronchitis, emphysema or pulmonary fibrosis
  • A pulmonary function test within the last 90 days that reveals FVC or FEV1 with less than 60% predicted value
  • A desire to participate

Pending qualification, Medicare and most insurance companies cover the cost of the required tests and rehabilitation sessions.

Your first visit will be for evaluation, paperwork and a parking permit. For this visit, free valet parking is offered at the front entrance of the hospital and you will be given a wheelchair. (The gym is located about a half-mile from the entrance.)

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Cold, Flu or COVID-19?

Symptoms of a cold, flu and COVID-19 can be similar. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides the following most common symptoms, all of which may vary from person to person. Please note that information continues to evolve about COVID-19.

Symptoms & Signs Cold Flu COVID-19
Symptom Timing Gradual Symptoms typically appear 1-4 days after infection Symptoms typically appear 5 days after infection, but can be as soon as 2 days and up to 14 days
Fever or feeling feverish Rare Sometimes Typical
Chills Uncommon Typical Typical
Headache Uncommon Typical Typical
Muscle pain or body aches Slight Typical Typical
Fatigue Sometimes Typical Typical
Cough Mild to moderate Typical Typical
Difficulty breathing, shortness of breath Uncommon Typical Typical
Sore throat Common Sometimes Typical
Runny or stuffy nose Common Sometimes Typical
Sneezing Common Sometimes Not common
Vomiting and diarrhea Rare More common in children than adults Typical
New loss of taste or smell Uncommon Sometimes Typical

Colds, the flu and COVID-19 are caused by different viruses, and the difference can be undetectable by symptoms alone. Seek a test to confirm a diagnosis. Protect your community by staying home and avoiding interactions within 6 feet of others when experiencing any of the above symptoms. Please don’t delay care.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention