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Respir Res ; 23(1): 94, 2022 Apr 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1793938


BACKGROUND: Before the pandemic of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), rapidly improving acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), mostly defined by early extubation, had been recognized as an increasingly prevalent subphenotype (making up 15-24% of all ARDS cases), associated with good prognosis (10% mortality in ARDSNet trials). We attempted to determine the prevalence and prognosis of rapidly improving ARDS and of persistent severe ARDS related to COVID-19. METHODS: We included consecutive patients with COVID-19 receiving invasive mechanical ventilation in three intensive care units (ICU) during the second pandemic wave in Greece. We defined rapidly improving ARDS as extubation or a partial pressure of arterial oxygen to fraction of inspired oxygen ratio (PaO2:FiO2) greater than 300 on the first day following intubation. We defined persistent severe ARDS as PaO2:FiO2 of equal to or less than 100 on the second day following intubation. RESULTS: A total of 280 intubated patients met criteria of ARDS with a median PaO2:FiO2 of 125.0 (interquartile range 93.0-161.0) on day of intubation, and overall ICU-mortality of 52.5% (ranging from 24.3 to 66.9% across the three participating sites). Prevalence of rapidly improving ARDS was 3.9% (11 of 280 patients); no extubation occurred on the first day following intubation. ICU-mortality of patients with rapidly improving ARDS was 54.5%. This low prevalence and high mortality rate of rapidly improving ARDS were consistent across participating sites. Prevalence of persistent severe ARDS was 12.1% and corresponding mortality was 82.4%. CONCLUSIONS: Rapidly improving ARDS was not prevalent and was not associated with good prognosis among patients with COVID-19. This is starkly different from what has been previously reported for patients with ARDS not related to COVID-19. Our results on both rapidly improving ARDS and persistent severe ARDS may contribute to our understanding of trajectory of ARDS and its association with prognosis in patients with COVID-19.

COVID-19 , Respiratory Distress Syndrome , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/therapy , Humans , Intensive Care Units , Oxygen , Respiration, Artificial/methods , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/diagnosis , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/epidemiology , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/therapy
J Pers Med ; 12(3)2022 Feb 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1700261


BACKGROUND: Nasogastric tube (NGT) placement is a daily routine in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), and misplacement of the NGT can cause serious complications. In COVID-19 ARDS patients, proning has emerged the need for frequent NGT re-evaluations. The gold standard technique, chest X-ray, is not always feasible. In the present study we report our experience with the use of ultrasonographic confirmation of NGT position. METHODS: A prospective study in 276 COVID-19 ARDS patients admitted after intubation in the ICU. Ultrasonographic evaluation was performed using longitudinal or sagittal epigastric views. Examinations were performed during the initial NGT placement and every time the patients returned to the supine position after they had been proned or whenever critical care physicians or nurses considered that reconfirmation was necessary. RESULTS: Ultrasonographic confirmation of correct NGT placement was feasible in 246/276 (89.13%) patients upon ICU admission. In 189/246 (76.8%) the tube could be visualized in the stomach (two parallel lines), in 172/246 (69.9%) the ultrasonographic whoosh test ("flash" due to air instillation through the tube, seen with ultrasonography) was evident, while in 164/246 (66.7%) both tests confirmed correct NGT placement. During ICU stay 590 ultrasonographic NGT evaluations were performed, and in 462 (78.14%) cases correct NGT placement were confirmed. In 392 cases, a chest X-ray was also ordered. The sensitivity of ultrasonographic NGT confirmation in these cases was 98.9%, specificity 57.9%, PPV 96.2%, and NPV 3.8%. The time for the full evaluation was 3.8 ± 3.4 min. CONCLUSION: Ultrasonographic confirmation of correct NGT placement is feasible in the initial placement, but also whenever needed thereafter, especially in the COVID-19 era, when changes in posture have become a daily practice in ARDS patients.

Mediterr J Rheumatol ; 31(1): 94-97, 2020 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-593899


The current use of chloroquine and/or hydroxychloroquine, a drug currently used to treat autoimmune rheumatic diseases, in treating severe acute respiratory syndrome caused by coronavirus 2 (SARSCoV-2) or COVID-19-infected patients with pneumonia is a matter of intense consideration. We wish to enter the ongoing debate as to whether this well-known drug must be given to Greek COVID-19-infected patients, especially those with pneumonia. Our arguments are based on the existing data and the capacity of the Greek health system to afford potent anti-viral treatments, which are under immense investigation. We propose several suggestions related to treatment of COVID-19 pneumonia with chloroquine/hydroxychloroquine that we think must be taken into consideration to fit the evolving situation of the pandemic in Greece.