Background: To evaluate noninvasive ventilation (NIV) in diffuse interstitial lung diseases (DILD) patients with acute respiratory failure (ARF) according to baseline radiological patterns and the etiology of ARF.
Methods: In a multicenter, observational, retrospective study, consecutive DILD patients undergoing NIV because of an episode of ARF were evaluated in six Italian high dependency units. Three groups of patients were identified based on the etiology of ARF: those with pneumonia (Group A), those with acute exacerbation of fibrosis, (Group B) and those with other triggers (Group C). Clinical failure was defined as any among in-hospital mortality, endotracheal intubation and extra-corporeal membrane oxygenation use.
Results: Among the 60 patients enrolled (63% males; median age: 71 years), pneumonia (42%) and acute exacerbation of fibrosis (39%) were the two most frequent causes of ARF. A significant increase of PaO2/FiO2 ratio during NIV treatment was detected in Group A (p = 0.010), but not in Group B. No significant difference in PaO2/FiO2 ratio, PaCO2 and pH values during NIV treatment was detected in patients with a radiological pattern of usual interstitial pneumonia (UIP) and non-specific interstitial pneumonia (NSIP). 22 patients (37%) suffered for a clinical failure. No significant differences in the study outcome were detected in Group A vs. Group B, as well as among patients with a radiological pattern of UIP vs.
Nsip conclusions: NIV treatment should be individualized in DILD patients with ARF according to the etiology, but not the baseline radiological pattern, in order to improve oxygenation.