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Mobilizing Patients on a Vent - Case Study - Mrs. Anderson

Mobilizing Patients on a Vent
Case Study: Mrs. Anderson


Mrs. “A” was born with Cystic Fibrosis (CF), and for 52 years she had remained active despite all the deterrents associated with her illness. She underwent a lung transplant in 2007 and was doing quite well until her transplant began to falter in March of 2014.

As a result, she was admitted to the ICU at UHS hospital in San Antonio. She was intubated and spent the next 2.5 weeks in bed. The hospital staff was not in the practice of ambulating intubated patients. Obviously, this physical setback also took a toll on Mrs. A’s emotional well-being. During this period she also underwent a tracheostomy in order for her to ventilate with a trach. Fortunately, UHS had been researching early mobility and decided to trial the LIVENGOOD PACE as a solution for both consolidating equipment and for making mobility possible in the ICU.

The LIVENGOOD Clinical Specialists arrived at UHS and worked together with the staff to elect a ventilated patient to begin ambulating with the PACE. This would be a first! They all agreed that Mrs. A was a great candidate. It was consensus that getting her out of bed would be good for her, both physically and mentally.

They explained to her that she was about to make history. She would be the first patient at UHS San Antonio to ambulate on the vent and also the first patient in Texas to use the LIVENGOOD PACE. Mrs. A was unable to speak so she used her cell phone to type notes to the staff. She typed, “Why me?” on her phone and smiled from ear to ear! She was thrilled at the prospect of getting out of bed and being mobile. After the staff transferred her equipment to the PACE, she eagerly got up to walk…and it wasn’t just a few steps - she actually walked out of her ICU room and continued 60 feet down the corridor. She was ecstatic and naturally the staff celebrated with her as it was a success for all! The next morning she was smiling and sitting up in a chair. She typed, “That was the best sleep I’ve had since I got here!”

She quickly progressed by walking 80 feet the next day and 120 feet on the third day. She was able to leave the hospital on the fourth day to begin the next phase of her rehab at a local LTAC.

*Case Study and photographic images used with patient permission