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Trial finds that mobile patient lifts help ICU patients recover

Mobile patient lifts help ICU patients recover
Use of mobile patient lifts for ICU patients on mechanical ventilation improve their physical function during ICU admission by accelerating the standing process. The intervention group predominantly stood faster than the control group. The Intervention group also had significantly higher Functional Status Score -ICU scores at ICU discharge. Credit: Dr. Ginga Suzuki

A recent randomized, controlled trial in Tokyo, Japan, has unveiled the positive impact of early mobilization, assisted by mobile patient lifts, on the recovery of ventilated intensive care unit (ICU) patients. The debate surrounding the efficacy of early mobilization in ICU has persisted for an extended period.

The treatment of critically ill patients in ICUs, often involving prolonged limb immobilization or restricted mobility, is acknowledged as a risk factor for diminished and diminished quality of life post-recovery, commonly termed as post-intensive care syndrome (PICS) or ICU-acquired weakness (ICU-AW).

While early mobilization, the initiation of physical activity in the early stages of ICU treatment, has been suggested as a for ICU-AW, its impact on outcomes has been highly controversial.

A new study aimed to investigate whether a more proactive approach to early mobilization, assisted by mobile patient lifts, could facilitate mobilization compared to usual rehabilitation. The study is published in the journal Critical Care Medicine.

The study enrolled 80 patients who received ventilation for a minimum of 48 hours. The intervention group underwent assistance in sitting, standing, transfers, and walking using a mobile patient lift. The researchers observed that the use of mobile lifts led to earlier standing (on day one, compared to day three in the after the initiation of rehabilitation).

Furthermore, the exhibited higher Functional Status Score for the Intensive Care Unit scores (FSS-ICU) at ICU discharge, physical function during ICU stay.

The study underscores the benefits of early mobilization for mechanically ventilated ICU patients when combined with the use of mobile patient lifts. Given the historical controversy surrounding the effectiveness of early mobilization, these findings may contribute to our understanding of the recovery process in ICU patients.

"We anticipate that proactive early mobilization, with the assistance of mobile patient lifts, will play a pivotal role in preventing post-intensive care syndrome. To draw conclusive evidence for the advantages of early mobilization, further studies should accumulate supportive data," said Dr. Ginga Suzuki, the lead author of the study.

More information: Ginga Suzuki et al, Early Mobilization Using a Mobile Patient Lift in the ICU: A Randomized Controlled Trial, Critical Care Medicine (2024). DOI: 10.1097/CCM.0000000000006219

Journal information: Critical Care Medicine
Provided by Toho University
Citation: Trial finds that mobile patient lifts help ICU patients recover (2024, February 6) retrieved 20 April 2024 from
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