Which abnormalities of acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) are related to the underlying etiology?

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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Other abnormalities observed in ARDS depend on the underlying cause or associated complications and may include the following:

  • Hematologic - In septic patients, leukopenia or leukocytosis may be noted. Thrombocytopenia may be observed in septic patients in the presence of disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC). Von Willebrand factor (VWF) may be elevated in patients at risk for ARDS and may be a marker of endothelial injury.

  • Renal - Acute tubular necrosis (ATN) often ensues in the course of ARDS, probably from ischemia to the kidneys. Renal function should be closely monitored.

  • Hepatic - Liver function abnormalities may be noted in either a pattern of hepatocellular injury or cholestasis.

  • Cytokines - Multiple cytokines, such as interleukin (IL)–1, IL-6, and IL-8, are elevated in the serum of patients at risk for ARDS.

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