Assessment and management of patients with pulmonary disease

Paul C. Tamul*, William T. Peruzzi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Objective: Often, the critically ill are not optimized in terms of their chronic diseases and are with little physiologic reserves. Data Sources: This article contains a review of the pathophysiology of the major preexisting and chronic pulmonary disease encountered in the critically ill, such as asthma, emphysematous disease, and chronic bronchitis. It also includes a summary of other significant disease processes such as acute respiratory disease syndrome, cigarette smoking, and pulmonary alveolar proteinosis and the implications of obesity and obstructive sleep apnea. When confronted with critical illness, the morbidity is magnified. Close observation of patients for evidence that the underlying disease may complicate their pulmonary status, and vice versa, creates an environment where the whole patient can heal and recover from illness. Conclusion: The aim of the intensive care unit team should be recognition of the patient at risk, use of necessary therapies (i.e., bronchodilators) as early as feasible, and treatment titrated to realistic endpoints as the acute illness progresses and subsequently resolves.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S137-S145
JournalCritical care medicine
Issue number4 SUPPL.
StatePublished - Apr 2004


  • Asthma
  • Beta blockers
  • Emphysema
  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • Pulmonary alveolar proteinosis
  • Restrictive lung disease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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