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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 22  |  Issue : 11  |  Page : 789--796

Lung ultrasound and blood gas-based classification of critically ill patients with dyspnea: A pathophysiologic approach

1 Department of Anesthesia and Critical Care, AIIMS, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India
2 Department of Medicine, AIIMS, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India
3 Department of Anesthesia, GMC, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India
4 Department of CFM, AIIMS, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Saurabh Saigal
Department of Anaesthesia, AIIMS, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijccm.IJCCM_338_18

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Introduction: The objective of this study was to classify dyspneic patients and to evaluate outcome variables on the basis of lung ultrasound (LUS) and arterial blood gas (ABG) findings. Methods: We performed a retrospective chart-based review in which we included patients with dyspnea admitted to our intensive care unit (ICU) between March 2015 and August 2016. On the basis of LUS (presence of A-lines/B-lines) and ABG (hypoxia/hypercarbia), patients were classified into six groups: (i) metabolic defect (dry lung, no hypoxia); (ii) perfusion defect (dry lung, hypoxia); (iii) ventilation defect (dry lung, hypoxia, and hypercarbia); (iv) ventilation and alveolar defect (wet lung, hypoxia, and hypercarbia); (v) alveolar defect-consolidation ([wet lung] hypoxia, no echocardiographic [ECG] abnormality); (vi) alveolar defect-pulmonary edema (wet lung [usually bilateral], hypoxia, ECG abnormality). The patient's demographic data, sequential organ failure assessment (SOFA) score, need for intubation, vasopressors, form of mechanical ventilation, ICU outcome, and length of stay were noted. Results: A total of 244 out of 435 patients were eligible for inclusion in the study. The median age was 56 years. 132 patients (54.1%) required mechanical ventilation, and median SOFA score was 7. Noninvasive ventilation was required in 87.5% of patients with ventilation defect as compared to 9.2% with alveolar defect-consolidation (P < 0.0001). We had 21.7% mortality in patients with alveolar defect-consolidation, 10.8% mortality in patients with metabolic defect, and 8.7% mortality in patients with alveolar defect-pulmonary edema (P < 0.0001). Conclusion: This classification gives an organized approach in managing patients with dyspnea. It predicts that patients with alveolar defect-consolidation are most sick of all the groups and need immediate intervention.


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