Normal ventilatory function depends on a balance between ventilatory demand and ventilatory capacity. The respiratory muscles play a critical role in achieving this balance. For patients experiencing ventilatory dysfunction, interventions that improve respiratory muscle function and therefore increase ventilatory capacity may be one way of restoring the balance and promoting ventilatory function. Respiratory muscle conditioning, or training the muscles to improve their strength and endurance, may be a useful clinical intervention in the weaning patient. Results of research show that muscle training may increase the ability of some patients to resume spontaneous ventilation. Continued research is needed to identify the appropriate training protocols for patients experiencing an acute imbalance between ventilatory demand and capacity

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