Acute Weakness in Intensive Care
Acute weakness may directly lead to a requirement for critical care or may occur during an episode of critical illness, that is, critical- care neuropathy.
Treatment requires a multidisciplinary approach. Pain control, nutrition, pressure area care, thrombo-prophylaxis, physiotherapy, and psychological care must all be addressed for the best outcome to be achieved.
Guillain–Barré syndrome is one of the commonest causes of acute weakness seen on the ITU.
Serial assessments of the respiratory system, including spirometry help to evaluate the progress of the disease, and the need for critical-care support.
Bulbar palsy and swallowing difficulties must be recognized early, otherwise aspiration and subsequent pneumonia may occur.
Impaired respiratory muscle function requiring ventilatory support
Inability to cough or clear secretions
Secondary complications of the disease process, for example, sepsis, myocardial infarction (MI)
KeywordsSpinal Muscular Atrophy Autonomic Dysfunction Percutaneous Endoscopic Gastrostomy Tube Critical Illness Myopathy Myasthenic Crisis
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