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Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (cont.)

What medication are used to treat ARDS?

The following drugs may be administered:

  • Antibiotics to treat infection
  • Anti-inflammatory drugs, such as corticosteroids, to reduce inflammation in the lungs in the late phase of ARDS or sometimes if the person is in septic shock
  • Diuretics to eliminate fluid from the lungs
  • Drugs to counteract low blood pressure that may be caused by shock
  • Anti-anxiety drugs to relieve anxiety
  • Inhaled drugs administered by respiratory therapists to open up the airways (bronchodilators)

What is the follow-up for ARDS?

Patients with ARDS may require a prolonged period of rehabilitation for both respiratory problems and muscle weakness. After discharge from the hospital, the person should follow-up with his or her healthcare provider for a lung function assessment.

How can I prevent ARDS?

Because aspiration is a risk factor for ARDS, taking appropriate measures to prevent aspiration, such as elevation of the head of the bed, may prevent some cases of ARDS.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 11/20/2017
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