Post Intensive Care Syndrome (PICS)
Muscle weakness, memory problems, depression, insomnia, physical pain, nightmares. These are just a few examples of the problems that patients may experience following critical illness. Symptoms such as these which affect emotional, physical, and cognitive health are now being recognized as Post Intensive Care Syndrome, or PICS. Efforts to educate health care providers, patients, and families about Post Intensive Care Syndrome are underway. Explore our site to learn more about PICS.
Not surprisingly, the top risk factor for developing Post Intensive Care Syndrome is experiencing critical illness or injury. However, beyond that one factor, there is a lot we have yet to learn about risk factors and how they relate to challenges in the post-ICU time period. The following is a list and explanation of some of the associated conditions and/or critical care interventions that are currently recognized as risk factors for the development of PICS.
Other risk factors that are discussed as contributing to this problem include: age, need for a breathing machine while in the ICU, use of sedative medications, preexisting mental health conditions, and others. As the medical community continues to learn more about Post Intensive Care Syndrome, certainly more will be discovered about what places people at risk.
Come back next month when we discuss specific signs and symptoms to look for in Post Intensive Care Syndrome.
Send an email to invite people you know to join the Post Intensive Care Syndrome (PICS) page.