For the past three to four decades, the onset of acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS)
has brought substantial insight into its epidemiology and pathophysiology. It is characterised by an
acute lung injury resulting in widespread pulmonary oedema due to increased alveolar capillary
permeability. Acute lung injury arises from the damaging effects of inflammatory mediators.
Treatment of ARDS involves various modalities of supportive care categorised as ventilator and nonventilator
measures. Berlin’s conference consensus definition of ARDS has been widely accepted in
defining and categorising ARDS. The promising therapies for future include use of statins, aspirin,
nebulised heparin, AdrenoMedulin, Interferon beta, Tumour necrosis factor (TNF alpha) receptor blockade, Angiotensin
converting enzyme and keratinocytes growth factors.