Wegner (2017) Hydrotherapy for a long term ventilated patient – A case study and implications for practice

Hydrotherapy of mechanically ventilated patients has been shown to be safe and feasible in both the acute stages of critical illness and in those requiring long term mechanical ventilation. This case study describes the hydrotherapy sessions of a 36 year old female, who after suffering complications of pneumococcal meningitis, became an incomplete quadriplegic and required long term mechanical ventilation. When implementing hydrotherapy with patients on mechanical ventilation a number of factors should be considered. These include staff resources and training, airway and ventilation management, patient preparation and safety procedures. Hydrotherapy can be safely utilised with mechanically ventilated patients, and may facilitate a patient’s ability to participate in active exercise and rehabilitation.

Keywords: Hydrotherapy, Mechanical ventilation, Critical care, Rehabilitation

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