How is acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) diagnosed?

Updated: Mar 27, 2020
  • Author: Eloise M Harman, MD; Chief Editor: Michael R Pinsky, MD, CM, Dr(HC), FCCP, FAPS, MCCM  more...
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Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) is defined by the acute onset of bilateral pulmonary infiltrates and severe hypoxemia in the absence of evidence of cardiogenic pulmonary edema. Workup includes selected laboratory tests, diagnostic imaging, hemodynamic monitoring, and bronchoscopy. ARDS is a clinical diagnosis, and no specific laboratory abnormalities are noted beyond the expected disturbances in gas exchange and radiographic findings.

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