Early mobility in critically ill patients is not only feasible and safe, but has the potential to prevent or treat complications of critical illness. What is the process for mobilizing patients in your unit? How early do you start this process? In this issue, Perme and Chandrashekar review the evidence related to early mobility and walking with critically ill patients and describe their program.

  • One study showed that the extent of comorbid diseases did not affect when ambulation was started or limit the ability of patients to ambulate.

  • The use of an intensive care unit (ICU) mobility team reduced both ICU stay and hospital stay for patients with respiratory failure.

  • Under most circumstances, monitoring and life support equipment, including ventilators, should not limit mobility.

  • Physical therapists are essential members of the interdisciplinary team but their role is often not well defined and is...

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