Indications for Proning in Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome: Expanding the Horizon!

Lokesh K Lalwani, Vinod Sharma, Dhruva Chaudhry, Pawan K Singh
Indian Journal of Critical Care Medicine 2020, 24 (7): 589-591

Background: Previously prone positioning (PP) was described in addition to invasive mechanical ventilation and it has been known to reduced mortality and improve oxygenation in patients of ARDS. Recently novel timing of prone positioning was described with the use of high-frequency nasal cannula (HFNC) and noninvasive ventilation (NIV) in patients of acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) to avoid the intubation. Here we would like to share a case of severe ARDS where prone positioning was used in a step further ahead.

Case description: A 38-year-old gentleman presented with the complaints of progressive breathlessness, dry cough and fever for 7 days. Patient was diagnosed as a case of H1N1 pneumonia with severe ARDS. Patient was initially managed with invasive mechanical ventilation according to ARDS-Net protocol. Despite persistent hypoxia he was put on prone positioning for consecutive 4 days. Patient was extubated after 10 days of mechanical ventilation and put on HFNC in view of persistent high oxygen requirement. At this point of time, we attempted prone positioning in addition to HFNC. Patient was comfortable on prone position and put himself in the same condition for prolonged periods. His oxygenation showed a remarkable improvement from PaO2 of 63 (before prone positioning) to 136 mm Hg (after prone positioning). Oxygen supplementation was later tapered off and subsequently, he improved and was shifted to ward.

Conclusion: Prone positioning is a harmless and still extremely effective intervention which can and should be utilized at all steps of ARDS-management.

How to cite this article: Lalwani LK, Sharma V, Chaudhry D, Singh PK. Indications for Proning in Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome: Expanding the Horizon! Indian J Crit Care Med 2020;24(7):589-591.

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