ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Herbal Remedy Could Halt Peanut Allergy
Air Quality Better in Northeast, Midwest
Childhood Food Allergies on the Rise
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Tai Chi: An Ideal Exercise for Many People with Diabetes
Health Tip: Anticipating Acupuncture
U.S. Spends Billions On Alternative Medicine
ANIMAL CARE
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
Safe Toys for Dogs
BONES & JOINTS
Frankincense Provides Relief for Osteoarthritis
More Faces Being Spared in Motor Vehicle Accidents
Varicose, Spider Veins May Be Inevitable for Some
CANCER
Vitamin D Good for Breast Cancer Patients
Papaya Could Be a Cancer Fighter
Vitamin C Shows Promise as Cancer Treatment
CAREGIVING
Rapid Infant Weight Gain Linked to Childhood Obesity
Recession Scrambling Health Spending in U.S.
ER Less Likely to Diagnose Stroke in Younger Folks
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Varicose Veins May Mask Larger Problem
Firefighters Have Narrower-Than-Normal Arteries, Study Finds
Secondhand Smoke Quickly Affects Blood Vessels
COSMETIC
What to Do If You Have Unsightly Veins
Gum Chewing May Cut Craving for Snacks
Mouse Study Finds Molecule That Tells Hair to Grow
DENTAL, ORAL
Laser Technology Spots Cavities Before They Start
A Sweet Way to Shield Baby's Teeth
Acid Drinks Blamed for Increase in Tooth Erosion
DIABETES
Saliva Test Could Monitor Type 2 Diabetes
Coffee, Tea Might Stave Off Diabetes
Insulin Resistance Tied to Peripheral Artery Disease
DIET, NUTRITION
Uncover Why Turmeric Helps You Heal
5 Reasons why you could gain weight while dieting
Vinegar Might Help Keep Off Pounds
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Plastics Chemical Tied to Aggression in Young Girls
Sunken, Unexploded Bombs Pose Cancer Risk
'Safe' Ozone Levels May Not Be for Some
EYE CARE, VISION
Vision Test for Young Children Called Unreliable
Florida Vision Test Law: Fewer Traffic Deaths Among Elderly
Americans Losing Sight of Eye Health
FITNESS
The Juice From Beetroots May Boost Stamina
Keep Safety in Mind While Your Kids Are Cooling Off in the Water
Mom and Baby Alike May Benefit From Exercise
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Gum Chewing May Speed Colon Surgery Recovery
Soothing Imagery May Help Rid Some Kids of Stomach Pain
Japanese Herbals May Ease Gastro Woes
GENERAL HEALTH
U.S. Prepares for Possible Return of Swine Flu in Fall
Swine Flu Now Reported in All 50 States
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
HEAD & NECK
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Save Your Aging Brain, Try Surfing The Web
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
The Internet Is Becoming One-Stop Shopping for Health Help
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Irregular Heartbeat Tied to Alzheimer's Disease
Soy Protein Doesn't Lower Cholesterol
Too-Low Blood Pressure Can Also Bring Danger
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Swine Flu Closes Three Schools in NYC
Swine Flu Is Now a Pandemic Says W.H.O.
Bacterial Infections May Succumb to Honey
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Better Sleep, Grades Seem to Go Up
Meaningful Conversations Boost Kids' Language Skills
Mom and Baby Alike May Benefit From Exercise
MEN'S HEALTH
Strenuous Daily Workout May Keep Cancer at Bay
Lots of Sex May Prevent Erectile Dysfunction
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
MENTAL HEALTH
Man's Best Friend Helps Mend Broken Hearts
A Simple 'Thank You' Brings Rewards to All
Reminiscing Helps Build Emotional Strength
PAIN
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
For Baby and Mom Alike, Breast-Feeding May Be Best
Exercise Boosts Bone Density in Breast-Feeding Moms
Breast-Feeding Benefits Moms and Babies
SENIORS
A Little Alcohol May Stave Off Alzheimer's
The Healthy Habits of Centenarians
Life Expectancy in U.S. Hits New High
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Meditation May Help Put Primary Insomnia to Bed
Exercising Throat Muscles May Relieve Sleep Apnea
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Caffeine in Pregnancy Associated With Low Birth Weight Risk
Postmenopausal Women With Breast Cancer Face Joint Issues
Vitamin D Good for Breast Cancer Patients
Add your Article

Early Exercise Boosts Outcomes for ICU Patients

THURSDAY, May 14 (HealthDay News) -- Interrupting the sedation of critically ill patients in the intensive care unit (ICU) to engage them in brief physical therapy may lead to better outcomes, a new study suggests.

As noted by researchers writing in the May 13 online edition of The Lancet, weakness and neuropsychiatric disease are often complications of the immobilization caused by long-term sedation in the ICU.

The new randomized, controlled trial involved 104 patients who were on mechanical ventilators for less than 72 hours but were expected to continue on ventilation for another 24 hours. A team led by Dr. John Kress of the University of Chicago assigned 49 of the patients to daily interruption of sedation and early exercise and mobilization, while the other 55 patients received standard care.

The team then tracked patients after discharge for signs of "independent functional status" -- the ability to walk unaided and carry out six tasks of daily living.

According to the Chicago researchers, 59 percent of those who got the early exercise achieved that functional milestone over four weeks of follow-up, compared to 35 percent in the standard care group. Early physical therapy also cut the rate of delirium episodes in half and reduced the number of days in which patients required a ventilator.

"A strategy for whole-body rehabilitation -- consisting of interruption of sedation and physical and occupational therapy in the earliest days of critical illness -- was safe and well-tolerated, and resulted in better functional outcomes at hospital discharge, a shorter duration of delirium, and more ventilator-free days compared with standard care," the researchers wrote.

Writing in an accompanying commentary, Dr. Stephan M. Jakob and Dr. Jukka Takala, of University Hospital, Switzerland, noted that "exercise should have a central role in the treatment of critically ill patients... Although physiotherapy is commonly administered to patients in intensive care during recovery from critical illness in the USA, the frequency and type of physiotherapy greatly varies between the type of hospital and clinical scenarios."

More information

There's more on care in the ICU at the Society of Critical Care Medicine.



-- E.J. Mundell



SOURCE: The Lancet, news release, May 13, 2009

Last Updated: May 14, 2009

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