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NHLBI

Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome - Causes

ARDS  acute lung injury  noncardiac pulmonary edema 

Damage to the lung’s air sacs—called alveoli—causes ARDS. Fluid from tiny blood vessels leaks through the damaged walls of the air sacs and collects, limiting the lungs’ normal exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide. The damage also causes inflammation that leads to the breakdown of surfactant—a liquid that helps keep your air sacs open.

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NHLBI

Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome - Risk Factors

ARDS  acute lung injury  noncardiac pulmonary edema 

You may have an increased risk of ARDS because of infection, environmental exposures, lifestyle habits, genetics, other medical conditions or procedures, race, or sex. Risk factors can vary depending on your age, overall health, where you live, and the healthcare setting in which you receive care.

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NHLBI

Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome - Screening and Prevention

ARDS  acute lung injury  noncardiac pulmonary edema 

Your doctor may screen for ARDS if you have risk factors for ARDS. Getting vaccines to prevent the flu and other infections, avoiding tobacco smoke, limiting the amount of alcohol you drink, and limiting your exposure to pollution can reduce your risk of getting ARDS.

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NHLBI

Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome - Signs, Symptoms, and Complications

ARDS  acute lung injury  noncardiac pulmonary edema 

Difficulty breathing is usually the first symptom of ARDS. Other signs and symptoms of ARDS may vary depending on the underlying cause and how severely you are affected. ARDS may take several days to develop, or it can rapidly get worse. Complications may include blood clots, infections, additional lung problems, or organ failure.

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NHLBI

Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome - Diagnosis

ARDS  acute lung injury  noncardiac pulmonary edema 

Your doctor will diagnose ARDS based on your medical history, a physical exam, and test results. ARDS can be difficult to diagnose and is often mistaken for another condition, so it is important to know your symptoms.

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NHLBI

Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome - Treatment

ARDS  acute lung injury  noncardiac pulmonary edema 

The goal of treatment for ARDS is to improve oxygen levels and treat the underlying cause. Other treatments aim to prevent complications and make you comfortable.

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NHLBI

Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome - Living With

ARDS  acute lung injury  noncardiac pulmonary edema 

If you have been diagnosed with ARDS, it is important that you continue your treatment plan. Get regular follow-up care to control your condition and prevent complications.

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