Office Location: SHPB 344
Department(s) and Affiliations
Center for Aging
Center for Exercise Medicine
Birmingham/Atlanta VA Geriatric Research, Education and Clinical Center
Areas of Research
Exercise testing and prescription for patients with chronic cardiac and pulmonary disease
Early mobility for patients in acute care/intensive care
Electronic analysis of lung sounds
Focus of Research
Currently the clinical population I primarily work with are kids with cystic fibrosis. We are developing tests and outcome measures to screen for and track musculoskeletal disorders and exercise tolerance in children admitted to the hospital for an acute exacerbation of their lung disease. We also hope to move these evaluations into the adult population as well as into outpatient settings. These outcome measures can be used to evaluate the effectiveness of physical therapy interventions provided in the hospital as well as to monitor progress at home. In particular, we are interested in moderate to high-intensity concurrent aerobic and resistive exercise training. We also hope to initiate a home-based exergame (Wii Fit Plus) intervention for adults with moderate to severe lung disease.
Another area of interest is providing early mobility for patients admitted to the intensive care unit or acute care hospital. Many negative sequelae develop as a consequence of decreased mobility associated with bed rest and hospitalization that can potentially be avoided. These negative effects typically result in prolonged hospitalization and discharge at suboptimal functional status, which is difficult to recover, especially in the elderly.
Lastly, we are working to develop a protocol to evaluate lung sounds/vibrations electronically. We hope this technique can better quantify the progression of lung pathology as well as detect potential exacerbations at an earlier stage, preventing possible hospitalization and morbidity associated with acute exacerbations of lung disease or heart failure.
Recent and Selected Publications
Lowman JD, Kirk TK, Clark DE. Physical therapy management of a patient on portable extracorporeal membrane oxygenation as a bridge to lung transplantation: A case report. Cardiopulm Phys Ther J 2012 March;23(1):30-35. [PMID: pending]
Clark DE, Lowman JD, Griffin RL, Matthews H, Rue LW, Reiff DA. Quality improvement in a trauma and burn intensive care unit: Safety and feasibility of an early mobilization program. [in review at Phys Ther]