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Review Article

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Monitoring of lung function in acute respiratory distress syndrome

Anders Larsson1, Claude Guerin2
Hedenstierna laboratory, Department of Surgical Sciences, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden; 2Ranimation Mdicale, Hpital de la Croix
Rousse, Lyon, France
Contributions: (I) Conception and design: All authors; (II) Administrative support: None; (III) Provision of study materials or patients: None; (IV)
Collection and assembly of data: All authors; (V) Data analysis and interpretation: All authors; (VI) Manuscript writing: All authors; (VII) Final
approval of manuscript: All authors.
Correspondence to: Anders Larsson, MD, PhD. Department of Surgical Sciences, Uppsala University, Akademiska sjukhuset, Ing 70, ANIVA 1tr, 75185
Uppsala, Sweden. Email:

Abstract: Monitoring of lung function is essential to assess changes in the lung condition, and to correct
and improve ventilator and adjuvant therapies in acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). In this review
we discuss the use of monitoring of gas exchange, lung mechanics and shortly on lung imaging in this

Keywords: Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS); monitering; gas exchange; lung mechanics; lung imaging

Submitted May 01, 2017. Accepted for publication Jun 08, 2017.
doi: 10.21037/atm.2017.06.56
View this article at:

The purpose of lung ventilation is providing adequate gas DP PnVT divided by effective end-expiratory lung volume
exchange without inducing further injuries to the lungs and (EELV)] (4,5). Therefore, this gives some rationale for
other organs. Exhaled gas and blood gas analysis monitor the driving pressure to be the most important respiratory
gas exchange, whereas lung mechanics (pressures, volumes variable to monitor in acute respiratory distress syndrome
and flow) and lung imaging enable the clinician to make (ARDS) (2).
sure they provide with lung protective ventilation as much In this review we will focus on gas exchange and
as possible. lung mechanics monitoring during invasive mechanical
However, there are no definite safe levels of PaO2 and ventilation for ARDS. We will briefly conclude with lung
PaCO2. Therefore, the patients physiological reserve and imaging monitoring because a specific chapter is dedicated
tolerance to hypoxemia and hypercapnia have to be taken to this in this special issue.
into account when deciding the individually acceptable
PaO2 and PCO2, and these acceptable levels could change
Gas exchange
during the disease process.
On the other hand, there is evidence that low tidal The primary function of the lungs is alveolar ventilation,
volumes (V T) (1), and low driving (DP) (2), and end- which provides O2 to and removes CO2 from the tissues.
inspiratory plateau (EIP) (1) pressures improve outcome. Typically, every minute about 250 mL O2 are delivered to
The exact levels of pressures and volumes that are safe have the pulmonary vein and about 200 mL CO2 are removed
been discussed and depend probably importantly on the from the mixed venous blood resulting in a respiratory
underlying pulmonary condition (3). In this context, DP (= quote (exchange rate) of 0.8 (6). The relationship between
end-inspiratory pressure minus EIP both at zero flow) has alveolar content in O2 and CO2 is expressed by using the
the advantage to take into consideration lung compliance simple gas alveolar equation:
that is related to the effective size of aerated lung at the end
of expiration [DP = VT divided by compliance and thus, PAO2 = [FiO2 (atm P PH2O)] PACO2/0.8 [1]

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Page 2 of 8 Larsson and Guerin. Monitoring in ARDS

where PAO2 is oxygen partial alveolar pressure, FiO2 oxygen (cardiac output), hemoglobin level as well as metabolic
fraction in air, PH2O water vapor partial pressure and PACO2 demand. Indeed, the oxygen transport (DaO2) to the tissues
carbon dioxide partial alveolar pressure. PACO2 is estimated is given by:
from PaCO 2 based on the equilibrium between end-
DaO2 = CO (mL/min) CaO2 (mL/mL) [2]
capillary and alveoli gas composition in normal subjects, an
assumption not fully valid in lung diseases. and

CaO2 = hemoglobin concentration (g/mL) SaO2 (%)

Monitoring of oxygenation 1.39 mL/g + PaO2 0.3 mL/ mL [3]

FiO2 is usually monitored by the ventilator to ascertain that where CO is cardiac output and CaO2 oxygen content.
adequate concentration of O2 is delivered to the patient, Thus, the exact level of tolerable PaO 2 must be
and the patients oxygenation status is then assured by pulse individualized. However, on the other hand, high PaO2
oximetry or by frequent blood gas analyses. should probably be avoided, except in some circumstances,
The O 2 hemoglobin saturation can quite well be e.g., severe acute anemia or carbon monoxide intoxication.
estimated by continuous measurement of pulse oxymetric Notably, a pilot trial found a conservative oxygenation
saturation (SpO2). However, the drawback is that it could be target (SpO2 8892%) feasible in a non-selected population
an important discrepancy between the blood O2 saturation of critically ill patients (8).
(SaO 2) and SpO 2 and that the measurement has a low A low PaO 2 is caused by low FiO 2, intrapulmonary
accuracy at lower SaO2. Furthermore, a prerequisite is that or intra-cardiac shunt, or ventilation/perfusion (V/Q)
the patient has an adequate peripheral perfusion. mismatch. High metabolic rate or too low cardiac
PaO2 might be continuously monitored. Unfortunately, output will augment the effects of both shunt and V/Q
the required transducers have to be inserted in an artery and mismatch (6). To distinguish between shunt and other
are difficult to maintain due to clotting around the catheter kinds of V/Q mismatch facing hypoxemia without using
tip as well as measurement drift. Therefore, hitherto it is Swan Ganz catheter and FiO2 1.0 in the clinical arena in
seldom used in the ICU. Henceforth, the most common an easy way is to use the Nunns shunt diagram showing
oxygenation monitoring requires frequent arterial blood that if PaO2 is low despite a high FiO2 the main problem is
samples and PaO2 measurement via a blood gas analyzer. shunt (6).
When interpreting a blood gas result it is important to Shunt is defined as perfusion of non-ventilated lung
consider that PaO2 is not the same as tissue oxygenation units, and it is important to consider that high airway
and furthermore, oxygenation, perfusion and metabolism pressures, particularly high PEEP when lung collapse
are highly different in different organs and tissues. To cannot be re-expanded due to high opening pressures,
overcome this, near infrared sensors (NIRS) device can be could direct the blood flow to the non-ventilated areas,
used for measurement as an example, of muscle oxygenation increasing shunt fraction, and the adequate therapy in
(on the thenar muscle) or brain oxygenation (with the these circumstances should be decreasing instead of
sensor applied on the temporal bone) (6). However, it is still increasing PEEP.
a question how well these devices reflect tissue oxygenation Also, in most conditions mixed venous oxygen partial
(and if so, only locally in one tissue or organ) and still no pressure (PvO 2) is more important than PaO 2, since it
conclusive data exists whether adjusting the management of primarily relates to the oxygen tension in the tissues (with
the patient using NIRS improves outcome. the caveat that it reflects a mixture of oxygen tensions in all
There are no studies that have investigated the level of organs and tissues) (6). The normal value is about 38 mmHg
the lowest acceptable PaO2. A large number of patients and a value <27 mmHg usually reflects insufficient oxygen
have been enrolled in the ARDSNet trials where the target delivery to the organs. If so, the other factors in the oxygen
oxygenation window was 5580 mmHg. However, PaO2 delivery and consumption equations should be assessed,
levels <60 mmHg has been found associated with cognitive i.e., cardiac output, pH (should be <7.4), hemoglobin
impairment in one study (7). Therefore, PaO2 >60 mmHg concentration and metabolism (e.g., body temperature,
has been suggested being adequate, but this value needs to sedation, shivering) and treated, and not only by increasing
be assessed in connection with the patients cardiac reserve FiO2, or by increasing the amount of perfused lung units by

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Annals of Translational Medicine, Vol 5, No 14 July 2017 Page 3 of 8

PEEP or lung recruitment maneuvers. lung collapse/consolidation) in ARDS is associated with

poor prognosis, and a reduced VD/VT by prone position
(reducing shunt by recruitment of previously collapsed lung
Monitoring of Carbon dioxide elimination
units) indicates a good prognosis.
CO2 elimination from the lungs is proportional to alveolar CO2 elimination is dependent on both the pulmonary
ventilation. circulation and the pulmonary ventilation as well the CO2
production (i.e., metabolism). Thus, a sudden decrease in
= VA respiratory rate (VT VDphysio ) [4]
CO2 excretion at stable ventilation is always due to a sudden
where VA is alveolar ventilation, VT tidal volume, and VDphysio decrease in pulmonary perfusion, e.g., pulmonary emboli or
physiologic dead space. This latter is equal to: a reduction in cardiac output (shock or cardiac arrest) (10).
Likewise, a decrease in CO2 excretion with no change in
VDphysio = VDalv + VDanat + VDapparatus [5]
circulation is due deteriorated ventilation, e.g., at pressure
where V Dalv alveolar dead space, V Danat is anatomical controlled ventilation reduced compliance (secretions
dead space due to airway and V Dapparatus anatomical dead edema or lung collapse) or increased airway obstruction by
due to any apparatus located between mouth/tip of the secretion (10).
endotracheal tube and the Y piece of the ventilator circuit PaCO 2 is obtained from ordinary blood gas analyzer
or leak in invasive or non-invasive mechanical ventilation, and has to be interpreted in relation to alveolar ventilation,
respectively (6). arterial pH, and, as mentioned before, pulmonary
It should be noted that the main part of CO2 in the blood circulation and CO2 production.
is transported as bicarbonate (80%) and only a minor part As a rule, ventilation should be adjusted to achieve a
is dissolved in the blood (510%) (6). The rest is bound to normal or slightly acidotic pH (7.27.4) and pH should
hemoglobin and other proteins. When oxygen is released not allowed to be >7.4 except in specific circumstances,
from the hemoglobin in tissues more CO2 molecules will e.g., acute increased intracranial pressure or perhaps acute
bind to the hemoglobin and in the lungs CO 2 will be pulmonary hypertension (12). Thus, a high pH constricts
released from when O 2 binds to hemoglobin (Haldane coronary arterial and intracranial vessels that might
effect) (6). reduce perfusion to both heart and the brain. In contrast,
Pulmonary CO2 elimination can be monitored a low pH, i.e., a high PaCO2, improves peripheral oxygen
by volumetric exhaled CO 2 measurement (the CO 2 delivery by its effect on oxygen-hemoglobin dissociation
signal is integrated with the expired flow) using in-line curve. However, it could increase pulmonary arterial
(preferentially) or side stream infrared CO 2 analysis vasoconstriction and thus pulmonary vascular impedance.
(9-11). It will give end-tidal CO2, VDanat and an estimate of In addition, a high PaCO2 affects the immune system with
VDalv ; with the use of arterial blood gases it is possible to both positive and negative effects (13).
calculate VDphysio (6). In addition, the CO2 curve will also give Ventilatory adjustments when PaCO 2 reduces pH to
information of spontaneous breathing efforts (9). unacceptable levels include reducing apparatus dead space
The Bohr dead space ( Bohr) is calculated as: (e.g., if a heat and moisture exchanger in used, removing
and replacing it by a heated humidifier), increasing minute
Bohr = ET 2 E 2 [6] ventilation, increasing end-inspiratory pause, which, due
to longer time allowed for gas diffusion, will move the
where PETCO2 end-tidal PCO2 and PE CO2 mixed expired diffusionconvection interface in the airways to a proximal
PCO 2 (10,11). Enghoff modified this equation by position and thus cause a decrease in airway dead space and
replacing end-tidal PCO2 with PaCO2 (10,11). Note that an improvement in CO2 elimination (14).
the Enghoff dead space is increased in conditions with
increased pulmonary increased pulmonary shunt. Dead
Monitoring lung mechanics
space measurement is useful for assessing prognosis and for
evaluating the effect of prone positioning as well as PEEP Most variables necessary for adequate monitoring can
titration. be obtained from modern ICU ventilators. Thus, it is
Thus, a high Enghoff VD/V T (as a sign of severe possible to monitor on the ventilator screen inspiratory and

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Page 4 of 8 Larsson and Guerin. Monitoring in ARDS

expiratory pressures during flow and no-flow conditions, been used to induce auto-PEEP in order to keep the lungs
inspiratory and expiratory gas flow rate and tidal volumes. open (inverse ratio ventilation). However, this method
Some ventilators have the option to measure esophageal keeps only the lung regions with long time constants open,
pressure (Pes), pressure volume loops during low flow but not the fast lung units, which collapse easily, in contrast
conditions as well as EELV and some derivatives from the to adequately high set extrinsic PEEP.
measurements, e.g., quasi-static and dynamic compliance, The elastance of the respiratory system (Ers) is calculated
inspiratory resistance and stress index (SI) (see below). as Paw/V where Paw equals the airway pressure
The mechanics of the respiratory system are dependent difference between two no-flow conditions, i.e., during
on the airway pressure, the pleural pressure, the flow rate, mechanical ventilation EIP and PEEP, and V is the VT.
the lung volume, the tidal volume and the condition of the EIP should be obtained after a short end-inspiratory pause
lungs and chest wall. Therefore, the local strain (lung tissue and initial part that best reflects the maximum pressure the
deformation or volume change) and the transpulmonary alveoli are subjected to (17). Since the flow into the lung
pressure (airway pressure-pleural pressure) are different is not zero, due to pendelluft and viscoelastic relaxation,
in different locations in a heterogeneous lung, such as in the obtained Ers is termed as quasi-static. Compliance
ARDS (15,16). It is also important to note that the results, of the respiratory system (Crs) is defined as the inverse of
not only depends on the condition of the respiratory system Ers, (Crs = 1/Ers). The elastance of the chest wall (Ecw)
but also on the patient position. and the lungs (EL) can be derived if the pleural pressure is
The lung mechanics are defined as the forces (i.e., estimated from the Pes. Similar as for the total respiratory
pressures) needed to inflate an amount of gas into the system, quasi-static elastance of chest wall and lung can be
lungs and include two components: (I) the force needed to computed as Ecw = Pes/V, EL = (Paw Pes)/V. Since
overcome the resistance to airflow in the endotracheal tube Ers = EL + Ecw, it follows that Crs = 1/CL + 1/Ccw.
and in the airways (flow-resistive pressure); and (II) the A more careful method to obtain quasi-static compliance
force needed to overcome the elastic properties of the lungs is by slowly or intermittently inflating the lungs by the
and the chest wall (elastic recoil pressure) (6). ventilator or by a super syringe to total lung capacity and
Normally during invasive ventilation about 70% of the then slowly deflate them and simultaneously measure airway
force needed to overcome resistance is due to endotracheal and Pes as well as lung volume changes. The pressures are
tube impedance and almost all of resistive force has then plotted on the X-axis and the volume on the Y-axis
dissipated as heat before the inspired gas reaches the of a graph, obtaining a pressure-volume loop. From this
bronchioles and alveoli. Therefore, the inspiratory flow loop both the inspiratory and expiratory compliance can
rate has minimal influence on alveolar stress and strain be obtained as the slope of the inspiratory and expiratory
and thus, ventilator-induced lung injury (VILI). Although limb of the loop, respectively. Note that these compliance
it is possible to estimate flow resistance, it is important to values are quite different due to hysteresis and inertia of
consider that resistance is dependent on the flow rate, that the chest-wallabdominal complex (lower compliance is
inspiratory resistance is different from expiratory resistance, found on the inspiratory than on the expiratory limb) (18).
and that resistance depends not only on the patients airways In addition, it shows that the pressures on the expiratory
but also to a variable extent on the endotracheal tube limb are lower than on the inspiratory limb at similar lung
resistance. Two easy monitoring methods that give hints volumes, also due to the effect of hysteresis (18). Although
of whether resistance is high or low are: (I) computation a full pressure volume loop can be obtained from some
of inspiratory resistance under a constant inspiratory flow ventilators this method can hardly be considered as an easy
as peak airway pressure minus EIP /inspiratory flow rate; monitoring method.
and (II) assessment whether the flow has ceased at end- Dynamic compliance is usually calculated as (Peak
inspiration (during pressure controlled ventilation) or at inspiratory pressurePEEP)/VT and therefore includes
end-expiration. If it has not, this is due to a time constant of both the resistive and elastic components.
the respiratory system (resistance compliance) that is too The two most important pressures to monitor are EIP,
long relative to inspiratory and expiratory time, respectively, which reflects alveolar pressure, and DP. EIP should be
resulting from ventilator settings. In ARDS this is due to a kept <2830 cmH 2O and DP <1415 cmH 2O. If these
high resistance or too short expiratory time. This latter has pressures increase during ventilation it could be due to

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Annals of Translational Medicine, Vol 5, No 14 July 2017 Page 5 of 8

reduced compliance (usually new lung collapse or increased Monitoring of adequate PEEP by the use of lung mechanics
edema) or increased auto-PEEP (secretion, biting-kinking
An optimal PEEP should be set at an end-expiratory pressure
of the endotracheal tube). It should be noted that it is the
that prevents: (I) expiratory collapse; (II) intra-tidal collapse
trans-pulmonary pressure, i.e., stress that induces VILI
and re-expansion (recruitment-derecruitment); and (III) end-
and therefore Pes should be assessed (19). This pressure
expiratory and end-inspiratory overdistension. Since the
is usually measured with air-filled balloon catheter in the
lungs are composed of >300 millions alveoli and in ARDS
third part of the esophagus (19). Thus, in conditions with
the lung mechanical properties are very heterogeneous, i.e.,
increased chest wall elastance, e.g., abdominal hypertension,
lung regions close to each other could have totally different
chest wall restriction e.g., scoliosis, or when the chest
specific lung volumes and compliances (16), a general set
wall pressure volume curve is right shifted as in obesity,
PEEP is always a compromise and could never be fully
transpulmonary pressure, i.e., lung stress, could be less
optimal. Furthermore, since we commonly use one
than estimated from airway pressure measurements (15).
endotracheal tube for ventilation, we have no other choice
It has been estimated that the transpulmonary driving
pressure should be <11.7 cmH2O, and the maximum stress than to set a PEEP that affects the entire lung.
(transpulmonary pressure) should be <24 cmH2O in order Except for lung imaging methods using respiratory
to prevent VILI (20). However, Pes does not always reflect mechanics are the most common for PEEP setting. The
the absolute value of the pleural pressure. In an adult, lung classical method is the set PEEP using a static pressure
healthy, supine person Pes is usually positive (commonly volume curve. PEEP is set at the pressure level where
about 5 cmH2O) at normal end-expiration at atmospheric inspiratory compliance increases, which can be disclosed by
pressure, but since the transpulmonary pressure in normal the so-called lower inflexion point (LIP). Ventilation is
expanded lungs must always be positive, pleural pressure has operating on the steep part of curve, i.e., between LIP and
to be negative in this circumstance. The positive value of the pressure at the upper inflexion point (UIP) at which
Pes is probably due to the fact that esophagus is compressed compliance suddenly decreases, indicating overdistension.
between the mediastinum and the thoracic vertebral However, the most import pressure is the pressure where
bodies (21). Furthermore, compliance of the esophagus a substantial amount of lung regions start to collapse, and
and esophageal muscle tone influences the measured Pes. this pressure is found on the expiratory limb of the pressure
On the other hand, as a rule, a correctly calibrated Pes volume loop, where compliance is maximal. Without using
has considered to give an acceptable estimate of pleural a pressure volume curve, similar pressure could be estimated
pressure at the gravitational level at which the esophageal with a decremental PEEP trial (i.e., reducing PEEP
balloon is located. However, still, the absolute value of Pes slowly) after a maximum recruitment is performed (24).
needs to be interpreted cautiously, while relative values are This pressure is found at the PEEP level with lowest DP
usually reliable. Moreover, although plausible and indicated (i.e., highest Crs) and the optimal PEEP is set 2 cmH2O
in one small study, whether ventilation adjusted to trans- above this pressure. One needs to consider that this kind of
pulmonary pressures improves outcome has not been maneuver is only useful if the lungs can be recruited, i.e.,
conclusively shown as yet (22). mainly in early ARDS.
Physiologically, it is not the volume and/or the pressure SI relates the tidal inspiratory pressure to inspiratory
per se that cause VILI, but the power delivered to the time using a constant inspiratory flow (25). Since at constant
respiratory system (23). Simply, power could be estimated as flow the time indicates a linear volume increase, SI could be
DP VT respiratory rate, although PEEP also influences regarded as a tidal volume/pressure curve, i.e., the instant
the power delivered to the lungs. The total amount of slope of the curve equals Ers if the resistance is constant.
energy is power time. If the power is above a specific Therefore, an increasing slope (SI >1) over time, and hence
threshold, it will induce VILI by mechanotransduction and volume, indicates an increased Ers, i.e., overdistension.
the following inflammatory reaction. In our view, the energy Conversely, a decreasing slope (SI <1) indicates a decreasing
might be an even more important factor for VILI since Ers, e.g., tidal alveolar recruitment, and a straight line
it also includes the duration of the injurious ventilation. (SI =1) a constant Ers (neither recruitment or distension
Therefore, avoiding inadvertent power and energy transfer or since the lungs are heterogeneous in ARDS, that
to the lungs is another reason to monitor DP and VT and equal amounts of lung parenchyma are recruited or over-
keeping them as low as possible. distended during the same breath). Although physiologically

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Page 6 of 8 Larsson and Guerin. Monitoring in ARDS

sound, it is not clear whether a PEEP setting in order to are obtained from CT scans.
achieve a SI =1 will reduce VILI or improve outcome. Lung ultrasound is a bedside method that has been
extensively developed during the recent years that is ideal
for both diagnosing and intermittent monitoring (29).
With a standardized approach it is possible to see pleural
Measurement of EELV is suggested for evaluating whether syndromes such as pleural fluid, pneumothorax as well as
the lung is collapsed/overdistended and for setting or alveolar interstitial syndromes and alveolar consolidation.
assessing the effect of PEEP. EELV could be estimated It may also be used to evaluate PEEP settings and tidal
with CT scan, but it is cumbersome and has radiation recruitment/derecruitment despite the limitation that it
risk at frequent repeated exposure. Therefore CT cannot cannot assess overdistension. Furthermore, it is considered
be seen as a monitoring routine tool, and particularly for to be more reliable method than chest radiography in
monitoring EELV or its changes, e.g., recruitment, by ARDS (29). Moreover, it is always available, and the
different kinds of interventions. measurements could be repeated quickly. In addition, with
Tracer gas dilution techniques are limited in that the the same equipment cardiac function could be assessed
closed circuit method requiring patient disconnection from that is helpful when diagnosing and treating patients with
the ventilator can hardly be deemed as monitor technique. ARDS. It is a relative fast method; a complete examination
In contrast, the open circuit multiple breath nitrogen of the lungs takes about 10 min.
washin-washout technique that is now incorporated in one EIT uses electric currents in order to image the changes
ventilator brand is quite easy to handle and gives acceptable in air content into the lungs (28). It is a continuous method,
estimates of EELV (26). However, one needs to consider where 16 to 32 electrodes are placed separately or on a
that the EELV obtained is solely the gas volume in lungs belt around the circumference of the lower thorax. These
and if EELV increases with increasing PEEP, it cannot electrodes are both transmitters and receptors of small
be determined whether the increase in EELV is due to electric currents. Since air/gas has higher impedance than
overdistension of open units, an increase in normal lung tissue or body fluids this method can evaluate changes
volume, or a recruitment of previously collapsed lung units in aeration in the thorax during breathing and current
or a combination of all. methods can obtain 50 images/s (28). Thus, it is possible
to evaluate regionaldorsal to ventraldifferences in
ventilation patterns and furthermore whether new collapse
Monitoring by lung imaging
or recruitment occur during ventilation. It may be used to
As mentioned the ARDS lungs are very heterogeneous and set PEEP level. In addition, by injecting hypertonic saline
with conventional lung mechanics it is not possible to assess (that has a low impedance) in a central IV line it is possible
the regional differences in lung mechanical properties. to evaluate regional pulmonary perfusion. The drawbacks
For this purposes chest CT and electrical impedance are that EIT does not assess aeration (only changes in
tomography (EIT) are the methods of choice. However, as aeration during ventilation), it covers only 23 cm frontal-
discussed above, CT is an excellent method for diagnosis dorsal slice of the lungs and more belts are needed if both
and understanding of the underlying deterioration in lung the caudal and the cranial region of the lungs should
morphology, but too demanding for monitoring (4,5,27). be assessed. Whether using this method for adjusting
However, initial therapy might be changed according the ventilation improves outcome is not known.
CT-findings that might improve outcome (27). EIT on the
other hand, is more useful for monitoring and evaluating
the regional effects of PEEP, recruitment maneuvers and
ventilation (28). Another useful method for this purpose is Using information from monitoring of gas exchange, lung
lung ultrasound, that is, in addition, suitable to diagnose mechanics and imaging it is usually possible to prevent
lung consolidation and pleural conditions (29). Ordinary VILI and maintain acceptable gas exchange. Particularly we
plain chest X-ray could be used for diagnosis of ARDS and want to point of the development of variables obtained by
is useful for assessing the lungs if the pulmonary function ventilator and monitored on the ventilator screens, exhaled
deteriorates although better information in these situations CO2 analysis and lung ultrasound.

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Annals of Translational Medicine, Vol 5, No 14 July 2017 Page 7 of 8

Acknowledgements 11. Suarez-Sipmann F, Bohm SH, Tusman G. Volumetric

capnography: the time has come. Curr Opin Crit Care
The work is supported by the Swedish Heart and Lung
foundation and the Swedish Research Council.
12. Vieillard-Baron A, Matthay M, Teboul JL, et al. Experts'
opinion on management of hemodynamics in ARDS
Footnote patients: focus on the effects of mechanical ventilation.
Intensive Care Med 2016;42:739-49.
Conflicts of Interest: The authors have no conflicts of interest
13. Curley GF, Laffey JG. Acidosis in the critically ill -
to declare.
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Cite this article as: Larsson A, Guerin C. Monitoring of lung

function in acute respiratory distress syndrome. Ann Transl
Med 2017;5(14):284. doi: 10.21037/atm.2017.06.56

Annals of Translational Medicine. All rights reserved. Ann Transl Med 2017;5(14):284