Pulmonary arterial hypertension is a rare, progressive, and chronic life-threatening disease. The initial symptoms are non-specific and induced by exertion – shortness of breath, excessive fatigue and weakness, chest pain, loss of consciousness.
Alongside specialised techniques and methods, the treatment for patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension should be accompanied by a range of long-term healthcare services. These can help patients learn to cope with this chronic disease. This requires a comprehensive physiotherapy programme that not only improves patients’ physical health, but also helps them learn to manage the disease themselves and develop healthy habits.
This is the first study in Latvia to investigate an interdisciplinary approach to treating patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension with a combination of drug therapy with a comprehensive home-based and remotely supervised physiotherapy programme.
In addition, patients’ assessment of their ability to participate in their daily lives as part of the overall assessment of quality of life has not yet been included in the study. This would provide more information on how this rare, life-threatening, and chronic disease affects patients’ lives. This approach allows both the patient and healthcare professionals to shift the focus from the limitations caused by the disease to the opportunities to participate in activities that are important to them, creating a comprehensive treatment model.
The design of the physiotherapy programme that was analysed in the study was based on the needs of the target group, the existing evidence of the effectiveness of physiotherapy methods, and the findings of the pilot study. The physiotherapy programme is comprehensive and includes four basic elements, which are made up of several components (see figure below).
Physiotherapy programme analysed in the study. From the dissertation by Līna Butāne
The results of the study confirm that an interdisciplinary treatment approach for patients with pulmonary arterial hypertension allows them to maintain and improve their participation in daily activities.
Supervisors: RSU Assist. Prof. Daina Šmite un RSU Assoc. Prof. Andris Skride.
The defence of the dissertation Comprehensive Home-based and Remotely Supervised Physiotherapy Programme within Interdisciplinary Treatment Approach in Patients with Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension by Līna Butāne will take place on 20 January 2023.
Source: Riga Stradins University