Directory of services
SCOPE OF SERVICE
Pulmonologists treat patients with asbestosis, chronic bronchitis, asthma, collapsed lungs, pneumonia, and other respiratory disorders. These latter include emphysema, influenza, pneumonia, tuberculosis, sarcoidosis, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and pulmonary emboli.
The Pulmonary Department utilizes a multidisciplinary approach to care. The tests and procedures that they use for diagnosis and treatment, include:
Pulmonary Function Testing
These tests provide essential information for the diagnosis and treatment of lung diseases. Pulmonologists divide the testing into several major categories: spirometry, lung volumes, and diffusion capacity.
Ultrasound Guided Thorocentesis
Some lung diseases cause fluid to accumulate in the pleural space. This pleural effusion restricts breathing and causes chest discomfort and shortness of breath. Thoracentesis describes the drainage of this pleural fluid through a small tube allowing the lung to expand.
Echocardiograms provide information on the viability of the heart, condition of the heart valves, the size of the heart, and the pressure between the pulmonary artery and the heart.
Bronchoscopy, Endobronchial Biopsy, Transbronchial Biopsy and Needle Aspiration.
In some situations, including suspected lung cancer, hemoptysis, and sarcoidosis, pulmonologists need to examine the patient’s trachea and bronchial tubes. Fiberoptic scopes, allowing for high-resolution images are used to accomplish this procedure. The bronchoscope allows for excellent visualization of the trachea and bronchial tubes enabling the pulmonologist to identify cancers, impacted mucous, or irritated mucosa. Lung biopsies may also be performed through the fiberoptic scope.
Guided Needle Aspiration of Lung Masses
In some cases a spot on the lung may not be accessible through a fiberoptic scope due to location. A guided needle aspiration is then indicated to obtain a tissue sample for pathological examination.
Vascular Studies of the Lower Extremities
Sonography of the lower extremities is offered to search for deep vein thrombosis in the venous circulation of the legs. This offers a tremendous resource in the diagnosis and combat of lung disorders themselves. Often, clot formation in the legs break up and eventually form lung emboli.
Continuos Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP)
This technology utilizes a small plastic mask placed over the nose to blow air into the upper airway during each breath and prevent airway occlusion and episodes of apnea.
Improvement in the life of patients with lung disease is demonstrated in those who participate in a controlled exercise program (pulmonary rehabilitation). Therapeutic breathing techniques are taught, and intensity of exercise gradually increased to improve cardiopulmonary functioning.
In some cases, patients with severe lung diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, chronic bronchitis, emphysema or recurrent pulmonary edema will require treatment with oxygen.
Endotracheal Intubation and Mechanical Ventilation
For patients in emergent respiratory distress coming directly to the Emergency Department, physicians use a temporizing measure of endotracheal intubation and mechanical ventilation.
This technique allows patients to breathe with the assistance of a machine until appropriate medications take effect and the patient can breathe independently.
Positron Emission Tomography (PET) Scanning is a diagnostic procedure. This new technique allows clinicians to study solitary pulmonary nodules and distinguish between lung cancer and benign etiologies. The test monitors the distribution of energy utilization in the different areas of the lung.