Post-intensive Care Syndrome: an Overview

J Transl Int Med. 2017 Jun 30;5(2):90-92. doi: 10.1515/jtim-2016-0016. eCollection 2017 Jun.


Survival of critically unwell patients has improved in the last decade due to advances in critical care medicine. Some of these survivors develop cognitive, psychiatric and /or physical disability after treatment in intensive care unit (ICU), which is now recognized as post intensive care syndrome (PICS). Given the limited awareness about PICS in the medical faculty this aspect is often overlooked which may lead to reduced quality of life and cause a lot of suffering of these patients and their families. Efforts should be directed towards preventing PICS by minimizing sedation and early mobilization during ICU.All critical care survivors should be evaluated for PICS and those having signs and symptoms of it should be managed by a multidisciplinary team which includes critical care physician, neuro-psychiatrist, physiotherapist and respiratory therapist, with the use of pharmacological and non-apharmacological interventions. This can be achieved through an organizational change and improvement, knowing the high rate of incidence of PICS and its adverse effects on the survivor's life and daily activities and its effect on the survivor's family.

Keywords: cognition; critical illness; intensive care; syndrome.