Acute respiratory distress syndrome: origin, pathophysiology, diagnostics and management possibilities

Paulius Ješkevičius1, Greta Venckutė1, Raimondas Kiltinavičius1

  1 Faculty of Medicine, Medical Academy, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Kaunas, Lithuania


Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) has been identified more than 40 years ago, nevertheless it remains one of the most obscure pathologies with minimal management possibilities. Death rate from this cunning syndrome is around 40 percent. Because of its sophisticated pathogenesis and aggressive course, means of management remains very limited. We live in a time when talking about this syndrome is crucial, we all know that new strain of coronavirus does not miss a chance to augment the incidence of ARDS. If one wants to prevent it from progressing, every clinician has to have the ability to identify ARDS signs, to know well the existing treatment possibilities and their specifics and to apply them according to guidelines, or if the circumstances does not allow it at least divert the patient to a proper specialist without delays. This is only achievable if one has a strong knowledge about the etiology, pathogenesis, pathophysiology, principles of diagnostics and means of treatment of ARDS. It is also very important to search for new management possibilities either pharmacological or non – pharmacological, that could employ an efficacious treatment or prevention for this pathology. Today many new pharmacological agents are being tried, many of them show positive results. It is likely that in the near future we will have more help possibilities treating people with ARDS.

Keywords: ARDS; PEEP; oxygenotherapy; acute; respiratory; distress; syndrome;