Feb 122011

Louie et al report results of a phase 3 industry-funded trial of fidaxomicin, a poorly absorbed oral macrolide that’s bacteriocidal vs C. difficile. The new drug was equivalent to oral vanco in curing C.diff infections (~90%), and superior at preventing recurrences (~14% vs 24%). It did not prevent recurrences of the more lethal and increasingly [… read more]

Feb 092011

The hygiene hypothesis got a boost from Ege et al, who analyzed dust from 16,000 European children’s bedrooms and mattresses (stored with clinical/demographic data in two huge repositories, GABRIELA and PARSIFAL), for bacterial DNA or growth on bacterial/fungal culture media. Children living on farms had odds ratios for asthma of 0.49 to 0.76, compared to [… read more]

Jan 162011

ICU patients have a 5-10% risk of deep venous thrombosis, even with appropriate prophylaxis. Ultrasound screening can detect many of these asymptomatic and clinically unsuspected DVTs. However, since many DVTs disappear without incident, and complications can result from additional testing and treatment with anticoagulation, and all of this costs money, the best approach to prevention [… read more]

Jul 032010

Priou et al followed 130 patients with OHS after initiation with noninvasive positive pressure ventilation. Mean follow up was 4 years. Most (96) were started on NPPV in the stable state; 38 had had an acute hypercapneic exacerbation. Survival at 1 year was 97.5%; 2 years (93%); 3 years (88%); 5 years (77%). The large [… read more]

Jan 242008

Meade MO et al. (Lung open ventilation study investigators) Ventilation strategy using low tidal volumes, recruitment maneuvers, and high positive end-expiratory pressure for acute lung injury and acute respiratory distress syndrome: a randomized controlled trial.  JAMA 2008; 299:637-45. Higher PEEP provided no benefit in 28-day mortality (28 vs 32%, p = 0.2), although it reduced refractory hypoxia (~5% [… read more]

Aug 242004

Brower RG et al. Higher versus lower positive end-expiratory pressures in patients with the acute respiratory distress syndrome. N Engl J Med 2004;351:327-36.  Randomized trial among 549 patients with ARDS/ALI conducted by NHLBI/ARDSNet. Compared high and low PEEP strategies, and found no significant difference in mortality, ventilator-free days, ICU-free days, or organ failure-free days between [… read more]

May 242003

Herridge MS et al. One-year outcomes in survivors of the acute respiratory distress syndrome. N Engl J Med. 2003; 348:683-93. Non-pulmonary problems are usually dominant in impairment of ARDS survivors. Low exercise tolerance, fatigue, and weakness are common a year after discharge. Pulmonary function tests usually normalized, other than a diffusion impairment. At 12 months, only 6% [… read more]

Jul 242000

ARDS Network. Ventilation with lower tidal volumes as compared with traditional tidal volumes for ALI and ARDS. N Engl J Med 2000;342:1301-8. The ARMA study found the use of low (6 ml/kg predicted weight) rather than “standard” (12 ml/kg predicted weight) tidal volumes reduced mortality from 40 to 30%. This paper established the standard of low [… read more]

Jun 162000

Ultrasound in the ICU: Case 1 Discussion Go Back to Ultrasound Case 1 Ultrasound Case 1 Answer: Hypovolemia. Hypotension may be caused by diverse pathophysiologic states that are hard to differentiate by clinical exam. Bedside ultrasound can provide immediate visual information that can help to rapidly make diagnoses of life-threatening conditions, without dependence on radiology [… read more]