Multisystem failure: a review with special reference to drowning

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Near-drowning represents an insult that can affect all organ systems. A common pathway for injury is hypoxemia, acidosis, and hypoperfusion. Pulmonary insufficiency and CNS dysfunction are major causes of morbidity and mortality. Variations in vascular volume, heart failure, renal failure, coagulation disorders, and electrolyte disturbances may also be present. Patients should be observed for multisystem failure and therapy tailored to the particular needs of each victim.

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