UMEM Educational Pearls

Category: Critical Care

Title: Types of Respiratory Failure

Keywords: Respiratory failure (PubMed Search)

Posted: 6/21/2016 by Feras Khan, MD
Click here to contact Feras Khan, MD

There are 4 types of respiratory failure that all providers should be familiar with

Type 1: Hypoxemic, PaO2 <50; this can include shunt , V/Q mismatch, or high altitude. Pulmonary edema, ARDS, pneumonia are common causes of this type of failure.

Type 2: Hypercapnic respiratory failure; decreased RR or tidal volume. This includes neuromuscular disorders including GBS or Myasthenia Gravis, in addition to medication overdose. COPD and asthma can lead to this type of respiratory failure as well.

Type 3: Peri-operative; atelectasis; decreased FRC from being supine or obese during the operative period.

Type 4: Shock or hypoperfusion leading to increased work of breathing and respiratory failure.