Background: We studied the value of routine biochemical variables albumin, C-reactive protein (CRP) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) to improve prediction and monitoring of acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) severity in the intensive care unit. Methods: In 101 critically ill patients, with or at risk for ARDS after new onset fever, data were collected on days (D) 0, 1, 2, and 7 after inclusion. ARDS was defined by the Berlin definition and lung injury score (LIS). Results: At baseline, 48 patients had mild to severe ARDS according to Berlin and 87 according to LIS (Rs = 0.54, P < 0.001). Low baseline albumin levels were moderately associated with maximum Berlin and LIS categories within 7 days; an elevated CRP level was moderately associated with maximum Berlin categories only. The day-by-day Berlin and LIS categories were inversely associated with albumin levels (P = 0.01, P < 0.001) and directly with CRP levels (P = 0.02, P = 0.04, respectively). Low albumin levels had monitoring value for ARDS severity on all study days (area under the receiver operating characteristic curve, AUROC, 0.62-0.82, P < 0.001-0.03), whereas supranormal CRP levels performed less . When the Berlin or LIS category increased, albumin levels decreased ≥1 g/L (AUROC 0.72-0.77, P = 0.001) and CRP increased ≥104 mg/L (only significant for Berlin, AUROC 0.69, P = 0.04). When the LIS decreased, albumin levels increased ≥1 g/L (AUROC 0.68, P = 0.02). LDH was higher in 28-day non-survivors than survivors (P = 0.007). Conclusions: Overall, albumin may be of greater value than CRP in predicting and monitoring the severity and course of ARDS in critically patients with or at risk for the syndrome after new onset fever. Albumin levels below 20 g/L as well as a decline over a week are associated with ARDS of increasing severity, irrespective of its definition. LDH levels predicted 28-day mortality.

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doi.org/10.1186/s12890-015-0015-1, hdl.handle.net/1765/87527
BMC Pulmonary Medicine
Department of Intensive Care

Hoeboer, S.H, Oudemans-van Straaten, H.M, & Groeneveld, J. (2015). Albumin rather than C-reactive protein may be valuable in predicting and monitoring the severity and course of acute respiratory distress syndrome in critically ill patients with or at risk for the syndrome after new onset fever. BMC Pulmonary Medicine, 15(1). doi:10.1186/s12890-015-0015-1