Narrative review: Incentive spirometry following thoracic surgery: what should we be doing?

Agostinia P and Singh S

In this review four studies and one systematic review were selected from all the published data retrieved after an extensive search. Only scientific papers and those pertaining to thoracic surgery or the postoperative treatment of patients with incentive spirometry were included.


In conclusion the authors found that physiological evidence suggests that incentive spirometry may be useful for lung re-expansion following major thoracic surgery. Postoperative physiotherapy regimes with, or without, the use of incentive spirometry appear to be effective following thoracic surgery compared with no physiotherapy input, this conclusion is based on a limited amount of evidence


Physiotherapy 2009; 95: 76 – 82


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