Critical Care

Jan 052014
 
Acute Liver Failure: Treatment (Part 2 of 2)

Acute Liver Failure: Treatment (Part 2 of 2) See also: Acute Liver Failure: Causes & Initial Management Management of acute liver failure is largely supportive critical care for the multiorgan failure that frequently results. Severe acute liver failure results in rapidly progressive hepatic encephalopathy and lethal cerebral edema; this complication requires special vigilance and expert [… read more]

Dec 142013
 

The Glycocalyx: An Overview for the Clinician. by Dr. Phillipe Rola Ok, so I’d had a couple of glimpses at articles in the past few years which referred to the glycocalyx, but, in truth, I tend to read most of the “bench” studies a little, well…quickly. So basically, when I listened to Paul’s (Marik) recent lecture at [… read more]

Dec 082013
 
Ventilator-Induced Lung Injury Review (Part 2 of 2)

Prevention and Management of Ventilator-Induced Lung Injury See also Part 1: Mechanisms of Ventilator-Induced Lung Injury The recognition that lifesaving mechanical ventilation can also be harmful, even lethal, has led to a sea change in the use of mechanical ventilation in critically ill patients — at least in theory. For people with acute respiratory distress [… read more]

Dec 072013
 
Ventilator-Induced Lung Injury Review (Part 1 of 2)

Mechanisms of Ventilator-Induced Lung Injury (Part 1) See also Part 2: Prevention and Management of Ventilator-Induced Lung Injury Although invasive mechanical ventilation saves tens of thousands of lives each year, it can also be harmful, causing or worsening acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) when misapplied. The repetitive stretching of lung tissue during positive pressure ventilation [… read more]

Dec 012013
 
Do colloids save lives in hypovolemic shock?

So, your patient’s in shock: quick, give some fluids. But colloids or crystalloids? How to choose? They both raise blood pressure, they both improve organ perfusion — but one’s less filling, the other tastes great (what, you haven’t tried them?). It’s no wonder the question makes your head hurt; the evidence base is a jumble. The [… read more]

Nov 232013
 
Hypothermia did not help after out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, in largest study yet

No Improvement in Cardiac Arrest Outcomes With Hypothermia Therapeutic hypothermia, or targeted temperature management, has become a standard component of post-cardiac arrest care. The evidence supporting this practice came from two small-to-medium-sized randomized trials, both published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2002: Among 273 patients with out-of-hospital cardiac arrest due to shockable [… read more]

Nov 162013
 
Shock Review: Mechanisms and Therapies

Shock Review (Part 1 of 2) (See also Shock Review Part 2: Goals of Therapy) Jean-Louis Vincent, editor in chief of Critical Care, has a new review article on circulatory shock in the New England Journal of Medicine, where he’s also the editor of their new critical care section. Daniel De Backer co-authors. (See also [… read more]

Nov 162013
 
Shock Review: Goals of Therapy

Shock Review (Part 2 of 2) (See also Shock Review Part 1: Mechanisms and Therapies) Shock results from serious illness compromising either vascular muscle tone (most commonly septic shock), the heart’s function, or the volume of plasma inside blood vessels. The true goal of treatment for shock is to correct the underlying cause, but except [… read more]

Nov 082013
 
Statins don't help in ventilator-associated pneumonia treatment

Statins have anti-inflammatory and immune-modulating effects, and among critically ill patients, continuing or starting statins have improved soft outcomes in observational and small randomized studies. For example, starting a statin reduced progression of sepsis in ward patients and statins improved organ failure scores in acute lung injury (the HARP trial). But in their first shot at [… read more]

Oct 292013
 
Esmolol infusion reduced septic shock mortality by 40% in RCT

Do I.V. Beta-Blockers Save Lives in Septic Shock? Catecholamines can be toxic — just ask anyone experiencing the heartbreak of tako-tsubo syndrome. Blocking the heart-flogging effects of the hormones epinephrine (adrenaline) and norepinephrine have long been known to improve long-term survival in congestive heart failure. People with septic shock might be the last group you’d consider giving [… read more]

Oct 242013
 
Dysphagia and swallowing disorders in the ICU (Review)

ICU-related Dysphagia and Swallowing Disorders More than 700,000 people develop respiratory failure requiring mechanical ventilation each year in the U.S. alone, and those that survive are at elevated risk for developing swallowing dysfunction. The aspiration syndromes that follow can be devastating, especially if not recognized and addressed early. Denver’s Madison Macht et al provide a clinical [… read more]

Oct 222013
 

Ultrasound-guided central venous catheter insertion: Standard of care, or preventing procedural skills? By Dr. Philippe Rola Ok, so let me preface this with the fact that I walk around with a handheld ultrasound rather than a stethoscope, and that I examine ALL patients with a focused cardiopulmonary and abdominal exam. My bias towards bedside ultrasound is [… read more]

Oct 192013
 
Overnight intensivists unnecessary in well-staffed ICUs? (Meta-analysis)

24/7 Intensivist Coverage Does Not Improve Outcomes: Meta-Analysis The debate over whether ICUs should be staffed around the clock by intensivist physicians has simmered for more than 20 years, with opinions on both sides driven more by values and personal biases than evidence. Recent studies have confirmed the benefit of daytime intensivists in ICUs but failed [… read more]

Sep 292013
 
Blood products for sepsis and septic shock

Transfusion of Blood Products for Sepsis and Septic Shock See all the Surviving Sepsis Guidelines* *PulmCCM is not affiliated with the Surviving Sepsis Campaign. People with severe sepsis and septic shock frequently experience what could be termed “hematologic failure” — abnormalities of blood cell lines and clotting / antithrombotic proteins that can occur in complex, [… read more]

Sep 282013
 
Intubation Checklists -- are theirs better than yours?

Intubation Checklists in the ICU and ED Can They Save Lives? Endotracheal intubation in the ICU or emergency department is often challenging, to understate by a lot. Intubations outside the operating room are often emergent rush jobs on crashing, hypotensive, severely hypoxemic patients, or people with who have just self-extubated. Pulmonologists’ and emergency physicians’ familiarity [… read more]

Sep 132013
 
Vasopressors for septic shock

Vasopressors for Septic Shock (from the Surviving Sepsis Guidelines) See more from Surviving Sepsis Guidelines* *PulmCCM is not affiliated with the Surviving Sepsis Campaign. Vasopressors are provided for septic shock that does not respond to fluid resuscitation. Norepinephrine (Levophed), epinephrine, vasopressin, phenylephrine (Neo-Synephrine), and dopamine are the most commonly used vasopressors for septic shock. To achieve adequate fluid [… read more]

Sep 052013
 

Following “Surviving Sepsis” Guidelines Not Always the Best Care By Dr. Philippe Rola First of all, I would like to commend those involved in the Surviving Sepsis Campaign’s Guidelines. It is a tremendous endeavour that, without a doubt, has heightened awareness and their growing implementation has and will save many lives. I would, however, also [… read more]

Sep 022013
 
Review of Surviving Sepsis Guidelines 2013

Surviving Sepsis Guidelines 2013 Review & Update The Surviving Sepsis Campaign launched in 2002 as a collaboration between the Society of Critical Care Medicine and the European Society of Intensive Care Medicine, with the shared goal of reducing deaths from sepsis and septic shock around the world. PulmCCM is not affiliated with the Surviving Sepsis Campaign. [… read more]

Sep 022013
 
Review of Surviving Sepsis Guidelines: Diagnosis of Sepsis and Septic Shock

Diagnosis of Severe Sepsis and Septic Shock (from the Surviving Sepsis Guidelines) See all the Surviving Sepsis Guidelines* *PulmCCM is not affiliated with the Surviving Sepsis Campaign. Sepsis is defined as an infection (definite or suspected) with systemic manifestations (any 2 from a list). This definition may seem overly broad — it means that many [… read more]

Sep 022013
 
Review of Surviving Sepsis Guidelines: Early Goal Directed Therapy, Initial Fluid Resuscitation

Initial Volume Resuscitation and EGDT for Severe Sepsis/Septic Shock See all the Surviving Sepsis Guidelines* *PulmCCM is not affiliated with the Surviving Sepsis Campaign. An approach including early goal directed therapy with aggressive initial fluid resuscitation has been considered a cornerstone of initial therapy for severe sepsis and septic shock, since a single-center randomized trial [… read more]