The Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) is a buildup of fluid in the lungs as a result of nonspecific inflammation of the lung tissue. This fluid prevents oxygen from reaching the bloodstream, resulting in organs and tissues to become deprived of oxygen. ARDS is commonly seen in people with critical illness or severe injuries. It is a condition associated with high death rate (20-50%) and a long-term hospital stay. Currently there is no well-documented treatment for ARDS.
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A recently published study in Science Translational Medicine looked at the effect of exercise on acute lung injury in an animal model. The study found that exercise produces immunomodulatory effects in the lung, thus reducing lung damage. The authors postulated that as a result of exercise recruitment and mobilization of white blood cells from the bone marrow to the lung was decreased, limiting inflammation. The study suggests that early mobilization of patients with ARDS can be important for this patient group.
Eivind Brønstad, Post Doc at CERG
Files DC, Liu C, Pereyra A, et al. Therapeutic exercise attenuates neutrophilic lung injury and skeletal muscle wasting. Sci Transl Med 2015; 7: 278-32.