Tim Curato begins a pulmonary function test as Rumford Hospital Respiratory Therapist Stacy Baker and Viasys Application Specialist Mark Cole monitor the new equipment.

Hospital has new testing equipment

RUMFORD – Rumford Hospital Respiratory Therapists Stacy Baker and Sue Rioux spent three days in training to use recently purchased pulmonary function testing equipment. The new equipment cuts the time needed to test patients from up to two hours to about 45 minutes.

The equipment allows the therapists to perform lung volume diagnostic tests that the old equipment could not do.

Previously, lung volumes were estimated or patients were referred to Central Maine Medical Center or Pulmonologist Dr. Neil Duval’s office for testing. “This PFT equipment will save many patients trips to Lewiston,” said Gale Hill, cardio-pulmonary manager. “For some, this may mean getting a vital test that they could not or would not travel to get.”

The machine is the same equipment in use at CMMC and Duval’s office. That means that, when a patient has an initial test at Rumford Hospital, follow-up testing done in Lewiston will be done on the same equipment, thus the results can be more reliably compared.

The upgraded software also reflects recent changes in the American Thoracic Society guidelines pulmonary testing.

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