Daniel is going to be getting a cough assist to aid him in bringing up sectretions. He is starting to have trouble with that and having allergies (seasonal) seems to have spurred it all. Has anyone had any experience with this yet? Does it help a lot? Any info would be greatly appeciated. They are coming out this week to bring it and show us how to use it but I would just like to know a little bit about what to expect with this machine and peoples experience with it.
Thanks,
Karen

P.S. There really needs to be a thread for Care Issues. Except for PT,the care issues do not fit into any of the catagories listed on here.

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Tim is eleven and he has had a cough assist for 5 years or so. He was prescribed one after a scary cold where he was choking on the secretions. The machine works great! Tim asks for it when he is sick. He is able to get the crap out of his lungs and I believe it has prevented pneumonia and definately prevented him from being hospitalized when he did have aspiration pnemonia a few years ago. We are not that good at using it when Tim is not sick. It is not a comfortable feeling to use it but Tim recognized quickly how much better he feels when using it while sick. Good luck with Daniel. I think you will find it very helpful and simple to use. The one trick we discovered was to use the manual cycle for intake and exhale. Tim had trouble following the automatic cycle so we use the manual and cue Tim with breath in and cough and we adjust the machine.
We got a cough assist last year just before the end of summer.

Usually Mitch has several chest infections each winter, last winter - none!

Can't speak highly enough of the use of cough assist. Mitchell evens said how much better he feels afterwards, which I think speaks volumes.

Agree with you on the need for a care issues section.
My son has used a cough assist for the past three years. He only needs to use it if he is sick and occasionally if he feels something in his throat and needs to cough. It was very easy for him to get used to. After using it a few times my son was able to tell what pressures it should be set on. It helps so much!! Most importantly he is able to bring up the junk before it settles in his chest bringing about pneumonia. Keeping a box of kleenex and we have found that a stack of papercups beside the machine works the best. Also put it in a place where he can just drive up to it and you are ready to go. We needed to add a another piece of hose to make it long enough to reach him better in his chair and in his bed. Good Luck! Your son should do just fine with it!
Laurie
Karen,
We got one a couple of years ago when our oldest got sick. It worked pretty well.
We truly learned how to use it this past fall when our middle son went to the hospital. We thought he just had a head cold, but it quickly turned to pneumonia and a collapsed lung. We were able to get all of the crud out of his lungs by using the cough assist. It can be pretty tiring if they are sick.
I agree that if you can use it as an "exercise" when they are not sick, it will help their overall lung capacity and function.
A tech taught us to stack breaths which is much more efficient and helpful to the boys. Instead of inhaling for a count of 3 and then exhaling, you push air in for single counts of 1 three times in quick succession, and then exhaling. It forces the lungs to expand even greater and then you are really able to bring up the secretions.

Good luck with it. After the pneumonia, Andy has moved to using a bi-pap at night. It has also made a huge difference.

Ed
Thanks everyone for the replies. You have given me some much needed comfort. Sounds like it's a good thing and not such a big deal. I can;t wait to see how much it helps Daniel and will be so glad to see him get some relief. He can't wait for it to come and is all for it!
My son Gregory is 4 1/2 and has the caugh assist for about 1 yr. Before that he has had bronchitis many times and was hospitilized for pnemonia (sorry about the spelling). He has only had colds since using the caugh assist. He plays with it more then ant thing, but it really helps. Sindy

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