When a chest tube is placed, it can be hard for the fluid to drain. Tissue plasminogen activator and DNase are given through the chest tube to help with draining the fluid. We are doing this research to see if early addition of tPA-DNase will help with better fluid draining.
The acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) affects 150,000 people in the US. Because of these mechanical abnormalities of the lung, ARDS patients may require mechanical ventilation. Patients with ARDS that are on mechanical ventilation have a 50% mortality rate. The overall objectives of this study are to demonstrate whether a protocol for the early use of inhaled N-acetylcysteine improves patient care and hospital stay.