Comparison of three respiratory physical therapy techniques and their impact on pulmonary function restoration among cardiac surgery patients in hospital settings


  • V. V. Vitomskyi SI “Scientific and Practical Medical Center for Pediatric Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery of the Ministry of Health of Ukraine” (Ukrainian Children’s Cardiac Center), Kyiv, Ukraine



physical therapy, incentive spirometry, іnspiratory muscle training, cardiac rehabilitation


The aim. To compare three respiratory physical therapy techniques and their impact on pulmonary function restoration among cardiac surgery patients in hospital settings.

Materials and methods. The study involved 126 patients of both sexes who were admitted for cardiac surgery. All the procedures were performed by sternotomy with cardiopulmonary bypass and cardioplegic arrest. The patients were randomly divided (with a ratio of 1:1:1 by envelope method) into the control group (CG, n = 42), incentive spirometry group (ISG, n = 42) and іnspiratory muscle training group (IMTG, n = 42). The examined patients underwent standardized physical therapy (early mobilization; therapeutic exercises; coughing). The groups varied in respiratory therapy. Patients of the ISG group performed additional respiratory exercises using a Tri-Ball respiratory exerciser (three repetitions of 10 forced, full and rapid inspirations through the respiratory exerciser under the supervision of a physical therapist; besides, they were recommended to perform 3 repetitions with 10 inspirations each hour). Patients of the IMTG group performed additional respiratory exercises using Respironics Threshold IMT breathing exerciser, received explanations and recommendations like patients of the ISG group. The pulmonary function test (PFT) was performed for the patients of all groups before the surgery and on the 7 postoperative day.

Results. PFT scores did not differ statistically between the groups of patients before the surgery. The three groups of patients had a negative dynamic of all test indicators, except Tiffeneau index. The analysis of PFT final scores did not confirm a significant difference in the studied indicators among the groups: vital capacity (P = 0.599), forced vital capacity (P = 0.393), forced expiratory volume in one second (P = 0.589), peak expiratory flow (P = 0.326), forced inspiratory vital capacity (P = 0.258), peak inspiratory flow (P = 0.569).

Conclusions. Statistical analysis of PFT indicators did not reveal any significant differences among the groups of cardiac surgery patients at the preoperative examination and on the 7 postoperative day, despite the differences in postoperative respiratory physical therapy.

Author Biography

V. V. Vitomskyi, SI “Scientific and Practical Medical Center for Pediatric Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery of the Ministry of Health of Ukraine” (Ukrainian Children’s Cardiac Center), Kyiv

PhD, Lecturer of the Department of Physical Therapy and Ergotherapy, National University of Ukraine on Physical Education and Sport, Kyiv, Ukraine; physical therapist


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How to Cite

Vitomskyi, V. V. (2021). Comparison of three respiratory physical therapy techniques and their impact on pulmonary function restoration among cardiac surgery patients in hospital settings. Zaporozhye Medical Journal, 23(4), 531–535.



Original research