These SMA Breathing Interventions Can Help With Lung Development

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by Wendy Henderson |

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Breathing issues for infants with spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) can cause serious illness and are the leading cause of death for those with type 1 and type 2 SMA.

Respiratory care is essential for children with SMA. Parents will need to watch for any breathing difficulties so they can be addressed as soon as possible. CureSMA explains that you will need to work with your healthcare team to come up with a personalized respiratory care plan for your child.

However, there are a couple breathing interventions using specialized equipment you can do with your child that will assist with lung development.

How to handle breathing difficulties in spinal muscular atrophy

Resuscitator Mask and Bag
The use of a resuscitator mask and bag can help infants with their breathing. Placing the mask over the child’s mouth and nose, you can squeeze the bag when your child inhales to help provide extra oxygen. This should be repeated several times over a period of a few minutes.

Cough Assist Machine
A cough machine is essential for families with SMA babies and children. It can help clear the airways, making breathing easier, and remove excess mucus from the lungs to reduce the risk of infection. Regular use of a cough assist machine may be recommended by your health care team. Parents will need to undergo brief training to learn how to use the machine.

How a cough assist machine works 

SMA News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.