Airway Clearance Therapies (ACTs)

Positive Expiratory Pressure (PEP)

Handheld device that allows you to breathe in freely but creates resistance when you breathe out. This process helps get air behind the mucus, detach it from lung walls, and promote movement up and out of the airways.

Time per session:
8‐10 mins

Self Administered

Products:
PEP Valve, PEP Mask

Oscillating Positive Expiratory Pressure (OPEP)

Hand‐held device that allows you to breathe in freely, but creates vibration and resistance when you breathe out. The vibration and resistance aid in moving mucus up and out of the airways.

Time per session:
5‐10 mins

Self Administered

Products:
Acapella Choice®, Aerobika®, Lung Flute®

High-Frequency Chest Wall Oscillation Vest (Mobile)

Portable vest device that vibrates against the chest wall to loosen mucus so it can be coughed up more easily. Allows for free movement during treatment.

Time per session:
15‐ to 30‐minute treatments twice per day

Self Administered

Products:
AffloVest®, Monarch®

High-Frequency Chest Wall Oscillation Vest (Stationary)

Vest device that plugs into an electric outlet and uses an air compressor and hoses to help clear the airways.

Time per session:
15‐ to 30‐minute treatmentstwice per day

Self Administered

Products:
The Vest®, InCourage®, SmartVest®

Huff Coughing

Involves taking a breath in, holding it briefly, and actively exhaling as if you are trying to “fog up” a mirror. Less intense than a regular cough, but may be more effective at clearing mucus.

Time per session:
5‐7 mins

Self Administered

P + PD

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Self Administered

Airway Clearance Breathing Techniques (ACBTs)

A three-step technique that helps clear mucus: breathing control (relax airways), chest expansion exercises (get air behind mucus), and huff coughing (move mucus to larger airways).

Time per session:
10 - 15 mins

Self Administered

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Self Administered

Chest Physical Therapy (CPT)

Uses percussion (clapping) and gravity (postural drainage/positioning) along with other techniques such as huff coughing to loosen and drain mucus from the lungs.

Time per session:
15 - 20 mins

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Self Administered