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  1. Laird, Patrick DNP(C), MSN, RN, ACNP-BC, CCRN
  2. Ruppert, Susan D. PhD, RN, ANP-BC, NP-C, FCCM, FAANP


This case study explores the management of an unusually complicated case of acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) extending over 52 days of hospitalization. Despite the utilization of conventional medical treatments and optimum respiratory support modalities, the patient's condition worsened and death was imminent without salvage therapy. After cardiovascular surgery consultation and spousal affirmation, extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) therapy was initiated for 6 days. The patient recovered and was able to return to regular employment. The collaborative roles of the acute care nurse and intensivist will be discussed in association with clinical evaluation and management.