BACKGROUND: Non-invasive ventilation (NIV) is increasingly used in patients with Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS). Whether, during NIV, the categorization of ARDS severity based on the PaO2/FiO2 Berlin criteria is useful is unknown. The evidence supporting NIV use in patients with ARDS remains relatively sparse.
METHODS: The Large observational study to UNderstand the Global impact of Severe Acute respiratory FailurE (LUNG SAFE) study described the management of patients with ARDS. This sub-study examines the current practice of NIV use in ARDS, the utility of the PaO2/FiO2 ratio in classifying patients receiving NIV and the impact of NIV on outcome.
RESULTS: Of 2,813 patients with ARDS, 436 (15.5%) were managed with NIV on days 1 and 2 following fulfillment of diagnostic criteria. Classification of ARDS severity based on PaO2/FiO2 ratio was associated with an increase in intensity of ventilatory support, NIV failure, and Intensive Care Unit (ICU) mortality. NIV failure occurred in 22.2% of mild, 42.3% of moderate and 47.1% of patients with severe ARDS. Hospital mortality in patients with NIV success and failure was 16.1 % and 45.4%, respectively. NIV use was independently associated with increased ICU (HR 1.446; [1.159-1.805]), but not hospital mortality. In a propensity matched analysis, ICU mortality was higher in NIV than invasively ventilated patients with a PaO2/FiO2 lower than 150 mmHg.
CONCLUSIONS: NIV was used in 15% of patients with ARDS, irrespective of severity category. NIV appears to be associated with higher ICU mortality in patients with a PaO2/FiO2 lower than 150 mmHg. Clinical trial registration available at www.clinicaltrials.gov, ID NCT02010073.