Wheeler AP, Bernard GR.
Medical Intensive Care Unit, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN
Acute respiratory distress syndrome and acute lung injury are well defined and
readily recognised clinical disorders caused by many clinical insults to the lung
or because of predispositions to lung injury. That this process is common in
intensive care is well established. The mainstay of treatment for this disorder
is provision of excellent supportive care since these patients are critically ill
and frequently have coexisting conditions including sepsis and multiple organ
failure. Refinements in ventilator and fluid management supported by data from
prospective randomised trials have increased the methods available to effectively
manage this disorder.