The article Psychiatric symptoms after acute respiratory distress syndrome: a 5-year longitudinal study, has been recently published in Intensive Care Medicine  by the group of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

The authors had the purpose of characterizing the psychiatric symptoms presented by patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) over five-year follow-up, using the Anxiety and Depression scale Hospital scales (HADS) and Impact of Event Scale-Revised (IES-R).

El estudio se realizó en 13 UCI de 4 hospitales. De los 196 pacientes que sobrevivieron, el 95% completó las escalas. Un 52% de los pacientes tenían síntomas continuos o recurrentes: ansiedad (38%), depresión (32%) y estrés postraumático (23%). Estas tres patologías tendían a aparecer de forma conjunta.

The study was conducted in 13 ICU of 4 hospitals. Of 196 survivors, 95% completed the scales. 52% of patients had continuous or recurrent symptoms: anxiety (38%), depression (32%) and post-traumatic stress (23%). These three pathologies tended to appear together.

Worse pre-ARDS mental health, including prior depression and psychological distress in the period immediately preceding ARDS, was strongly associated with prolonged post-ARDS psychiatric morbidity across symptom domains.

Therefore, the authors conclude that early follow-up ans screening of psychiatric symptoms may be useful to plan treatment and management after suffering an ARDS.

Another study that supports the care of the invisible, the monitoring and management of psychiatric symptoms and the development of specific consultations of post-ICU syndrome.

How much scientific evidence would we need to do this?

By Gabi Heras