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Chest radiography in the ICU

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      Abstract

      Proper positioning and assessment of abnormalities and complications of the above-mentioned devices have a significant impact on the management of critically ill patients in the intensive care unit (ICU). The timely assessment of new or rapidly evolving findings is critical. Optimal radiographic technique, availability of images to the clinicians, and rapid reporting by the radiologist all serve to maximize the efficacy of bedside chest radiography in the ICU. Sometimes, changes in cardiopulmonary status may only be appreciated on chest radiographs (CXRs). Complications from ventilatory assistance, such as barotrauma, occur frequently and must be detected promptly. The position of monitoring devices, an important component of critical care management, is best checked radiographically. Indications for CXRs and the recommended frequency for repeat follow-up CXRs are based on the existing literature and the consensus of an expert panel formed by the American College of Radiology.

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