The majority of patients, however, are children with asthma and chronic respiratory symptoms – coughing, labored breathing and respiratory infections.
“We help assess patients through lung-function testing, monitor them at frequent intervals, prescribe medications to control symptoms and create asthma plans that are then provided to their pediatricians,” Greenawald says. “If patients should become sick later, physicians contact us and we tweak the plans. There’s constant communication; we’re like a tag team.”
Beyond treating common issues such as asthma and chronic lung disease of prematurity, the team also cares for children with other lung diseases, congenital airway malformations and children on ventilators.
“Lehigh Valley Health Network [LVHN] has the only children’s hospital in the region to have an aerodigestive team providing multidisciplinary care with GI and ENT clinicians,” Greenawald says. “A lot of our kids have neuromuscular diseases, which carry a respiratory component.”
Pediatric pulmonologist Courtney Quinlan, DO, also with LVPG Pediatric Pulmonology, brings pulmonary expertise in sleep medicine to the robust LVHN Pediatric Sleep Center. Conducting about 1,500 pediatric sleep studies annually, “we identify obstructive sleep apnea typically caused by large tonsils or adenoids, central sleep apnea due to neurologic abnormalities, and help children with insomnia and behavioral or stress-related issues – which have increased during COVID-19,” says Quinlan.