Respiratory Medicine

Respiratory medicine focuses on the diagnosis, management and treatment of problems affecting the lungs and airways. This includes common conditions such as asthma and allergies, and more severe diseases such as lung cancer. 

At New Victoria Hospital, our multidisciplinary Respiratory Team is highly experienced in treating a wide range of respiratory issues. Supported by a specialist Respiratory Physiotherapy Team, and with access to state-of-the-art diagnostic suite, our Respiratory Consultants ensure every patient receives a quick diagnosis and enjoys the highest standard of care.


What is Respiratory Medicine?

Respiratory medicine deals with the diagnosis and treatment of conditions affecting the upper respiratory tract (nose, pharynx and larynx) and the lower respiratory tract (trachea, bronchi and lungs). It is a particularly diverse area of medicine that draws on elements in other specialties such as oncology, immunology and public health. A recent study revealed that one third of all acute hospital admissions are a result of respiratory problems.

The organs in the respiratory system are responsible for getting oxygen into the body and ensuring waste gases, such as carbon dioxide, exit the body. As it plays such an important role in the body, any issues that prevent the respiratory system from functioning properly can have significant consequences. Any respiratory problems should therefore be diagnosed promptly and dealt with comprehensively.

Common respiratory conditions and ailments include:

  • Asthma
  • Lung Cancer
  • Cystic Fibrosis (an inherited disease which causes the body to produce thick, sticky mucus in multiple organs including the lungs)
  • Sleep-related breathing disorders such as sleep apnoea (a sleep disorder in which breathing stops and starts)
  •  Long Covid

Long Covid

Long COVID is an umbrella term for an array of symptoms that are experienced after an individual has been infected with COVID. If these symptoms are experienced for longer than a few weeks after testing positive for COVID, then an individual is classed as having Long COVID.                                                                                            

Common symptoms include:

  • Breathlessness
  • Heaviness on the chest
  • Fatigue
  • Brain fog
  • Muscle aches
  • Insomnia
  • Persistent loss of taste or smell

Even though there are currently no official tests that specifically diagnose Long COVID, at New Victoria Hospital our Respiratory Consultants can carry out a number of targeted tests to see whether symptoms fit with typical Long COVID observations. For example, a lung function test can identify inflamed and irritated lungs. These can then be treated with anti-inflammatories.

Treatment for Long COVID can involve a number of targeted programs such as:

  • Medication
  • Respiratory Physiotherapy
  • Fatigue management
  • Exercise when appropriate
  • Psychological support e.g. CBT to help with some of the consequences of having Long Covid)

While Long COVID may be a new condition that is yet to be fully understood, the Respiratory Team at New Victoria Hospital are working to help many patients suffering from Long COVID  recover both physically and mentally so they can resume a normal life.

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Respiratory Medicine at New Victoria Hospital

At New Victoria Hospital, our nationally acclaimed Respiratory team is highly-experienced in identifying and treating any issues affecting the Respiratory system. With access to state-of-the-art diagnostic technology our Respiratory specialists are able diagnose all Respiratory conditions.

Common diagnostic investigations include:

  • Lung function tests (including Spirometry testing where the patient breathes in and out as hard as they can through a tube that measures how much air goes in and out of the lungs.)
  • X-rays (a chest x-ray can be used to diagnose issues such as pneumonia, cancer or pulmonary fibrosis)
  • CT scans or PET scans (these can be used to find problems that an x-ray cannot until they are further along such as cancer)
  • Bronchoscopy (this is a more invasive investigation where the Consultant will slide a small tube with a camera on the end into the airways to look inside the passages for things like mucus, blood or tumours.)

Working in tandem with renowned Consultants across a range of medical disciplines, our multidisciplinary Respiratory Team ensures every respiratory patient enjoys the highest level of care, from initial diagnosis to after-care.

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If you would like to receive more information on the Respiratory services we provide at New Victoria Hospital, please call us on 020 8949 9020 or fill out our online form. Our dedicated Outpatient Team will work to find you an appointment with a Respiratory Consultant at a convenient time on the earliest possible date.

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