Acute respiratory distress syndrome

Attention! This is a potentially life-threatening condition for your horse. Time is of the essence, contact your veterinarian immediately.Find a Vet

Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome

Proliferative Interstitial Lung Disease, Acute Bronchointerstitial Pneumonia, Acute Lung Injury, Interstitial Pneumonia

Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) or acute lung injury (ALI), is a severe, life-threatening condition characterized by widespread inflammation in the horse's lungs. The condition is most often caused by sequela of sepsis or significant trauma but can also result from a primary respiratory infection such as from Rhodococcus equi infections. ARDS prevents oxygen from getting to the horse's lungs and into the blood. Most humans who have this condition receive oxygen from a breathing machine; however, it isn't a practical treatment for horses suffering from ARDS.

Symptoms

Respiratory distress
Shortness of breath
Coughing
Abnormal respiratory sounds
Heave line
Nasal discharge

Diagnosis

  • History
  • Clinical signs
  • Physical exam
  • Radiography
  • Blood gas analysis

Treatment

TherapiesDetails
Rest
Intranasal oxygen supplementation
Anti-inflammatories
Antimicrobials
Maintenance crystalloid therapy

Prevention

Prognosis

Guarded

Scientific Research

General Overviews