Respiratory distress can quite literally take your breath away. It is a condition that can occur regardless of if you have a history of lung disease. More recently it has gained a lot of attention as it is one of the most severe outcomes of COVID-19.
Essentially, respiratory distress is caused by fluid leaking from the lungs' small blood vessels into the tiny air sacs responsible for oxygenating our blood. Viruses, injuries, or inhalants can all cause these blood vessels to break, which will result in respiratory distress.
In addition to COVID-19, other ailments that cause respiratory distress include sepsis (the most common cause), pneumonia, inhalation of pollutants, head or chest injuries, or burns.
People who are experiencing respiratory distress can go to their nearest urgent care. However, depending on the severity of their symptoms, they may need hospitalization.
Now more than ever, it is important for everyone to be aware of the signs of respiratory distress. Shortness of breath is a strong indicator, but there are other symptoms, including:
Sepsis is the most common cause of respiratory distress. One of the most common symptoms of sepsis is a fever in adults. Whenever a patient has a high fever, especially if it is not relieved by medication or is accompanied by respiratory symptoms, a provider should be seen.
Rapid COVID-19 testing in Palm Beach has helped protect many who may be at risk for respiratory distress. Protecting the vulnerable through testing, social distancing, and wearing masks will continue to be vital.
So who is most at risk for respiratory distress?
If you already have a severe medical condition or have an infection, you are at risk for severe respiratory distress. Chronic alcoholism and smoking or otherwise compromised lungs can also be a risk factor.
If suffering from respiratory distress, the patient must receive supplemental oxygen. Often the patient needs to be put on a ventilator to assist in breathing while they recover.
Also, IV fluids are given carefully with medications to treat the underlying cause of the distress. Steroids, pain medication, gastric medication, and sedation interventions are also administered to keep the patient safe and on the path to healing.
Respiratory distress is a symptom of another condition. If you are ill or injured, always seek medical attention as soon as possible if having respiratory involvement.
We have several options to help patients, including COVD-19 testing in Palm Beach. Seek assistance at the following locations:
For common conditions that can easily be treated from home, we offer telemedicine urgent care in Florida.
Questions about COVID-19 or respiratory distress? Feel free to contact our clinic. We are more than willing to answer any questions you have in a partnership to keep you well!
The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.
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