- Duchenne Foundation
- International Ventilator Users Networks
- UAMS Respiratory Care Services Website
Cough Assist Website – instructions, includes videos for use and care
Frog Breathing Technique
Frog breathing, or glossopharyngeal breathing (GPB) is a learned skill that can be used as a substitute (voluntary) method of breathing and augmenting cough. It can produce adequate ventilation for either short or long periods of time even when there is total paralysis of the respiratory muscles. Frog breathing uses the muscles of the tongue and the throat to force air into the trachea and lungs through a repetitious process. This process involves using the tongue and throat muscles as a pumping mechanism to force air into the lungs. (See diagram below.) This pumping action is sometimes referred to as a stroke. It is important to remember not to swallow, or air will enter the stomach. The muscles of the tongue, soft palate, pharynx and larynx must be functional.
Most patients need practice to master it. A proficient frog breather will average approximately 8 or 9 breaths per minute with each breath requiring 12 – 15 (strokes) involving the pump-like action mentioned earlier.