ICU-acquired weakness.

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ICU-acquired weakness.

Intensive Care Med. 2020 Apr;46(4):637-653

Authors: Vanhorebeek I, Latronico N, Van den Berghe G

Critically ill patients often acquire neuropathy and/or myopathy labeled ICU-acquired weakness. The current insights into incidence, pathophysiology, diagnostic tools, risk factors, short- and long-term consequences and management of ICU-acquired weakness are narratively reviewed. PubMed was searched for combinations of "neuropathy", "myopathy", "neuromyopathy", or "weakness" with "critical illness", "critically ill", "ICU", "PICU", "sepsis" or "burn". ICU-acquired weakness affects limb and respiratory muscles with a widely varying prevalence depending on the study population. Pathophysiology remains incompletely understood but comprises complex structural/functional alterations within myofibers and neurons. Clinical and electrophysiological tools are used for diagnosis, each with advantages and limitations. Risk factors include age, weight, comorbidities, illness severity, organ failure, exposure to drugs negatively affecting myofibers and neurons, immobility and other intensive care-related factors. ICU-acquired weakness increases risk of in-ICU, in-hospital and long-term mortality, duration of mechanical ventilation and of hospitalization and augments healthcare-related costs, increases likelihood of prolonged care in rehabilitation centers and reduces physical function and quality of life in the long term. RCTs have shown preventive impact of avoiding hyperglycemia, of omitting early parenteral nutrition use and of minimizing sedation. Results of studies investigating the impact of early mobilization, neuromuscular electrical stimulation and of pharmacological interventions were inconsistent, with recent systematic reviews/meta-analyses revealing no or only low-quality evidence for benefit. ICU-acquired weakness predisposes to adverse short- and long-term outcomes. Only a few preventive, but no therapeutic, strategies exist. Further mechanistic research is needed to identify new targets for interventions to be tested in adequately powered RCTs.

PMID: 32076765 [PubMed - in process]

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