Dean’s SmartVest Story
Dean Bleadorn, RRT, RCP has witnessed many evolutions in respiratory therapy in his 35 years of experience — in fact, that’s part of what drew him to the field.
“It changes all the time,” said Bleadorn, a registered respiratory therapist and respiratory care manager at a 532-bed hospital in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. “The therapy is always moving in different directions. It’s not the same mundane stuff all the time.”
“For the majority of our pediatric and adult patients, we use HFCWO.”
Case in point: Bleadorn and his team used to perform much more manual therapy on patients. With the advent of high frequency chest wall oscillation (HFCWO), that has fallen off significantly. “Most of the manual chest physiotherapy we do is with very young children,” he said. “For the majority of our pediatric and adult patients, we use HFCWO.”
“One of the primary values is you can use HFCWO concurrent with other therapies,” Bleadron said. “Patients like it, and it produces results. It’s just an effective therapy that has worked well for our therapists and our patients.”
“You can use HFCWO concurrent with other therapies”
His first introduction to the therapy came about 15 years ago when the hospital acquired some devices from a competitor of the SmartVest System. When Bleadorn and his team got the chance to choose, however, they selected the SmartVest.
“I always have my staff evaluate the equipment, and they liked the SmartVest System better,” Bleadorn said. “It just seemed that SmartVest was a little more user-friendly and easier to set up. The SmartVest Wrap in various patient sizes won over the staff.”
“SmartVest was a little more user-friendly and easier to set up.”
In addition to its simplicity and effectiveness, Bleadorn also prefers the SmartVest because it allows patients more range of positions, as well as eliminating the soreness that can come with manual therapy.
Bleadorn said his hospital mostly uses the SmartVest Wrap in cases of excessive secretions associated with conditions such as pneumonia, bronchitis, and bronchiectasis. (Chronic conditions such as cystic fibrosis are treated at another nearby hospital.)
For his hospital, the combination of SmartVest’s innovative technology and its disposable, single-patient wraps has been a game changer — a revolutionary product in a field that’s constantly evolving.