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Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome

Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome  (ARDS, Shock Lung)

When we talk about Acute respiratory distress syndrome, there is some respiratory insuffeciency.  The major causes for ARDS is viral pneumonia, fat emboli, sepsis, decreased surfactant production, fluid overload and shock.

For the NCLEX, it is important to know the pathophsyiology of ARDS.

  • First, the lung injury causes the platelets to aggregate.
  • The platelets then release substances that inflame and damage the alveolar membrane
  • The fluids shift into interstitial space
  • As capillary permeability increases, pulmonary edema results.
  • Then there is an alveoli collapse, impairing gas exchange.
  • Because of this, oxygen and carbon dioxide level in the blood increases.
  • Pulmonary edema worsens
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