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Qual Life Res ; 30(8): 2123-2135, 2021 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1509285


BACKGROUND: Veno-venous extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (VV-ECMO) has been used successfully for the past decade in adult patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) refractory to conventional ventilatory support. However, knowledge of the health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in VV-ECMO patients is still limited. Thus, this study aimed to provide a comprehensive overview of the HRQoL following VV-ECMO support in ARDS patients. METHODS: A systematic search was performed on PubMed and Web of Science databases from January 1st, 2009 to October 19th, 2020. Studies reporting on HRQoL following VV-ECMO for ARDS in adults were included. Two authors independently selected studies, extracted data, and assessed methodological quality. RESULTS: Eight studies were eligible for inclusion, consisting of seven observational studies and one randomized controlled trial (total N = 441). All eight studies had a quantitative design and reported 265 VV-ECMO survivors to have a reduced HRQoL compared to a generally healthy population. Follow-up time varied between six months to three years. Additionally, only four studies (total N = 335) compared the HRQoL of VV-ECMO (N = 159) to conventionally treated survivors (N = 176), with one study showing a significantly better HRQoL in VV-ECMO survivors, while three studies were stating comparable HRQoL across groups. Notably, most survivors in these studies appeared to experience varying degrees of anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). CONCLUSIONS: ARDS survivors supported by VV-ECMO have a decline in HRQoL and suffered from physical and psychological impairments. This HRQoL reduction is comparable or even better to the HRQoL in conventionally treated ARDS survivors.

Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation/psychology , Quality of Life/psychology , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/therapy , Adult , Cross-Sectional Studies , Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation/methods , Health Status , Humans , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/psychology , Survivors , Treatment Outcome
Chest ; 159(2): 749-756, 2021 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-809382


Dyspnea is an uncomfortable sensation with the potential to cause psychological trauma. Patients presenting with acute respiratory failure, particularly when tidal volume is restricted during mechanical ventilation, may experience the most distressing form of dyspnea known as air hunger. Air hunger activates brain pathways known to be involved in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and depression. These conditions are considered part of the post-intensive care syndrome. These sequelae may be even more prevalent among patients with ARDS. Low tidal volume, a mainstay of modern therapy for ARDS, is difficult to avoid and is likely to cause air hunger despite sedation. Adjunctive neuromuscular blockade does not prevent or relieve air hunger, but it does prevent the patient from communicating discomfort to caregivers. Consequently, paralysis may also contribute to the development of PTSD. Although research has identified post-ARDS PTSD as a cause for concern, and investigators have taken steps to quantify the burden of disease, there is little information to guide mechanical ventilation strategies designed to reduce its occurrence. We suggest such efforts will be more successful if they are directed at the known mechanisms of air hunger. Investigation of the antidyspnea effects of sedative and analgesic drugs commonly used in the ICU and their impact on post-ARDS PTSD symptoms is a logical next step. Although in practice we often accept negative consequences of life-saving therapies as unavoidable, we must understand the negative sequelae of our therapies and work to minimize them under our primary directive to "first, do no harm" to patients.

Critical Illness/psychology , Dyspnea/psychology , Respiration, Artificial/adverse effects , Respiration, Artificial/psychology , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/psychology , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/therapy , Anxiety/psychology , Depression/psychology , Female , Humans , Intensive Care Units , Male , Risk Factors , Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic/psychology , Tidal Volume