Pulmonary rehabilitation

Your appointment

We'll do a telephone assessment to make sure you're suitable for pulmonary rehabilitation. This will be on a Friday afternoon.

If you're suitable for the programme, we'll book a face-to-face appointment for a full assessment.

How to get an appointment

We accept referrals from:

  • GPs and practice nurses
  • doctors, nurses and physiotherapists in our outpatient chest clinics or inpatient wards
  • other specialist healthcare professionals in the community, such as our @home service

Changing or cancelling your appointment

Please give us as much notice as you can if you need to change of cancel your appointment. You can also call us to talk to one of our physiotherapists about your appointment.

If you do not attend your appointment without telling us, we may discharge you from our service.

Before your appointment

Please wear comfortable clothes for exercise, including trainers or shoes with flat soles.

If you're late, we may not be able to see you as this can cause delays for other patients and our classes run at set times.

Please bring:

  • any relievers you use, such as salbutamol, glyceryl trinitrate (GTN) spray or insulin
  • reading glasses, if needed
  • portable oxygen if you use this
  • any walking aids

During your appointment

At your first appointment, you'll see a senior specialist physiotherapist or occupational therapist. They'll:

  • ask questions about how your breathing condition affects your daily life
  • take measurements, such as heart rate, blood pressure, oxygen levels, height, and weight
  • carry out simple walking tests to see how your breathing affects your walking
  • explain how pulmonary rehabilitation and exercise can improve:
    • your breathlessness
    • the distance you can walk
    • your confidence to manage your breathing condition
  • answer any questions you may have about your breathing condition or pulmonary rehabilitation
  • book you into a class at the most suitable time for you

We're a teaching hospital and students might be involved in your care. The students are supervised by qualified staff and it is valuable training for them. It does not affect the quality of your treatment but please tell us if you do not want them to be involved. We'll always respect your wishes.

After your appointment

We'll aim to find best way to help you manage your problem. This may include:

  • taking part in the face-to-face pulmonary rehabilitation course at St Thomas' Hospital
  • taking part in the home-based exercise programme
  • referral to a pulmonary rehabilitation course in your local area
  • an exercise DVD, handbook and advice on exercising at home and being active in daily life
  • referral to another service for support

Last updated: May 2023

Contact us

For more information, please contact us.

Do you have any comments or concerns about your care?

Contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS)

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