Expert Opin Pharmacother. 2020 Aug 12:1-15. doi: 10.1080/14656566.2020.1801636. Online ahead of print.
INTRODUCTION: There is still no definite drug for acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) that is capable of reducing either short-term or long-term mortality. Therefore, great efforts are being made to identify a pharmacological approach that can be really effective.
AREAS COVERED: This review focuses on current challenges and future directions in the pharmacological management of ARDS, regardless of anti-infective treatments. The authors have excluded small randomized controlled trials (RCTs) with less than 60 patients because those studies do not have statistical power for outcome data, and also anecdotal trials but have considered the last meta-analysis on any drug.
EXPERT OPINION: There has been substantial progress in our knowledge of ARDS over the past two decades and many drugs have been used in its treatment. Nevertheless, effective targeted pharmacological treatments for ARDS are still lacking. The likely reason why a pharmacological approach is beneficial for some patients, but harmful for others is that ARDS is an extremely heterogeneous syndrome. To overcome this issue, a precision approach for ARDS, whereby therapies are specifically targeted to patients most likely to benefit, has been proposed. At present, however, the application of this approach seems to be a difficult task.