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The aim of this study was to investigate the performance of key hospital units associated with emergency care of both routine emergency and pandemic (COVID-19) patients under capacity enhancing strategies.
This investigation was conducted using whole-hospital, resource-constrained, patient-based, stochastic, discrete-event simulation models of a generic 200-bed urban U.S. tertiary hospital serving routine emergency and COVID-19 patients. Systematically designed numerical experiments were conducted to provide generalizable insights into how hospital functionality may be affected by the care of COVID-19 pandemic patients along specially designated care paths under changing pandemic situations from getting ready to turning all of its resources to pandemic care.
Several insights are presented. For example, each day of reduction in average ICU length of stay increases intensive care unit patient throughput by up to 24% for high COVID-19 daily patient arrival levels. The potential of five specific interventions and two critical shifts in care strategies to significantly increase hospital capacity is described.
These estimates enable hospitals to repurpose space, modify operations, implement crisis standards of care, prepare to collaborate with other health care facilities, or request external support, increasing the likelihood that arriving patients will find an open staffed bed when one is needed.
There is international variability in whether neurological determination of death (NDD) is conceptually defined based on permanent loss of brainstem function or “whole brain death.” Canadian guidelines are not definitive. Patients with infratentorial stroke may meet clinical criteria for NDD despite persistent cerebral blood flow (CBF) and relative absence of supratentorial injury.
We performed a multicenter cohort study involving patients that died from ischemic or hemorrhagic stroke in Alberta intensive care units from 2013 to 2019, focusing on those with infratentorial involvement. Medical records were reviewed to determine the incidence and proportion of patients that met clinical criteria for NDD; whether ancillary testing was performed; and if so, whether this demonstrated the absence of CBF.
There were 95 (27%) deaths from infratentorial and 263 (73%) from supratentorial stroke. Sixteen patients (17%) with infratentorial stroke had neurological examination consistent with NDD (0.55 cases per million per year). Among patients that underwent confirmatory evaluation for NDD with an apnea test, ancillary test (radionuclide scan), or both, ancillary testing was more common with infratentorial compared with supratentorial stroke (10/12 (85%) vs. 25/47 (53%), p = 0.04). Persistent CBF was detected in 6/10 (60%) patients with infratentorial compared with 0/25 with supratentorial stroke (p = 0.0001).
Infratentorial stroke leading to clinical criteria for NDD occurs with an annual incidence of about 0.55 per million. There is variability in clinicians’ use of ancillary testing. Persistent CBF was detected in more than half of patients that underwent radionuclide scans. Canadian consensus is needed to guide clinical practice.
What should you do if a patient is fitting? When should the new prescriber get concerned and intervene? This chapter provides a step-by-step guide to managing the seizing patient, while emphasising the importance of a good history and appropriate investigations. The reader is also provided with an approach to managing status epilepticus.
We present the case of a 3-month-old boy with pulmonary arterial hypertension after corrective repair of total anomalous pulmonary venous connection. The patient developed severe pulmonary arterial hypertension with a high mean pulmonary arterial pressure of 45 mmHg. We performed continuous monitoring of pulmonary arterial pressure using a tip deflecting microcatheter in the intensive care unit. We successfully managed this patient based on real-time pulmonary arterial pressure measurements. Continuous real-time monitoring of pulmonary arterial pressure using this microcatheter enables individualized targeted therapy for infants with pulmonary arterial hypertension.
Italy has been one of the first countries to implement mitigation measures to curb the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. There is currently a debate on when and how such measures should be loosened. To forecast the demand for hospital intensive care unit (ICU) and non-ICU beds for COVID-19 patients from May to September, we developed 2 models, assuming a gradual easing of restrictions or an intermittent lockdown.
We used a compartmental model to evaluate 2 scenarios: (A) an intermittent lockdown; (B) a gradual relaxation of the lockdown. Predicted ICU and non-ICU demand was compared with the peak in hospital bed use observed in April 2020.
Under scenario A, while ICU demand will remain below the peak, the number of non-ICU will substantially rise and will exceed it (133%; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 94-171). Under scenario B, a rise in ICU and non-ICU demand will start in July and will progressively increase over the summer 2020, reaching 95% (95% CI: 71-121) and 237% (95% CI: 191-282) of the April peak.
Italian hospital demand is likely to remain high in the next months. If restrictions are reduced, planning for the next several months should consider an increase in health-care resources to maintain surge capacity across the country.
The this study was carried out to determine the anxiety and hope status of the relatives of the patients in intensive care unit.
First degree relatives of 116 patients in the intensive care unit of a hospital were involved in the present study. The data of the research was collected using a personal information form, the Spielberger State Anxiety Scale and Hope Scale.
It was found that the relatives of the patients were anxious. There was a statistically significant negative relationship between the numbers of visit by the relatives of the patients and their hope scores (r=-.357, p=.000). The more they visited the patient the more they lost hope. It was found that hope score was low in the patient's relatives who were female, spouse or parents of the patient, anxiety was high and hope was low in the patient's relatives who were literate and who had low income, hope was high in the patient's relatives who lived in a city and who had social security.
The first-degree relatives of the patients in the intensive care unit experience anxiety. As the number of visits by the relatives of the patients increases, their hopes about the recovery of the patient decrease. Therefore, continuous communication with the medical personnel and being continuously informed about the status of the patient will be helpful for the relatives of the patients in the intensive care unit to deal with the present situation.
Psychiatric intensive care is supposed to offer treatment and to hold patients with psychiatric illness, if they pose a threat to themselves or to others. Besides treating the underlying psychiatric diagnoses, it is also necessary to take care of severe somatic comorbidity, which is often impeded by patients’ limited ability to cooperate. Treatment often requires the administration of sedative medication and occasionally the use of medical restraints. Involuntary commitment, involuntary treatment and the usage of physical restraints is regulated by national mental health laws. Medical professionals working in the field of psychiatric intensive care must have expert knowledge in the fields of psychopharmacology and intensive care medicine. Treatment concepts should be aimed to provide optimized care for psychiatric inpatients in a potentially life-threatening phase of their illness. This article outlines current clinical practice at the psychiatric intensive care unit of the Medical University of Vienna (Austria). Furthermore, we present diagnoses, diagnostic procedures and specific treatments of a sample of 100 consecutive inpatients treated in the years 2008 and 2009 at this ward.
To develop a physiological data-driven model for early identification of impending cardiac arrest in neonates and infants with cardiac disease hospitalised in the cardiovascular ICU.
We performed a single-institution retrospective cohort study (11 January 2013–16 September 2015) of patients ≤1 year old with cardiac disease who were hospitalised in the cardiovascular ICU at a tertiary care children’s hospital. Demographics and diagnostic codes of cardiac arrest were obtained via the electronic health record. Diagnosis of cardiac arrest was validated by expert clinician review. Minute-to-minute physiological monitoring data were recorded via bedside monitors. A generalized linear model was used to compute a minute by minute risk score. Training and test data sets both included data from patients who did and did not develop cardiac arrest. An optimal risk-score threshold was derived based on the model’s discriminatory capacity for impending arrest versus non-arrest. Model performance measures included sensitivity, specificity, accuracy, likelihood ratios, and post-test probability of arrest.
The final model consisting of multiple clinical parameters was able to identify impending cardiac arrest at least 2 hours prior to the event with an overall accuracy of 75% (sensitivity = 61%, specificity = 80%) and observed an increase in probability of detection of cardiac arrest from a pre-test probability of 9.6% to a post-test probability of 21.2%.
Our findings demonstrate that a predictive model using physiologic monitoring data in neonates and infants with cardiac disease hospitalised in the paediatric cardiovascular ICU can identify impending cardiac arrest on average 17 hours prior to arrest.
Introduction: Sepsis in cancer patients is associated with higher mortality rates than non-cancer patients. As a whole, hematological or solid tumor cancers have not demonstrated a prognostic link to sepsis survival rates in intensive care units (ICU), however poor-prognosis solid tumours (less than 25% 5-year survival) have not been investigated. This study examined ICU mortality rate and its predictive factors of patients with sepsis and poor-prognosis solid tumors in comparison to patients with higher prognosis solid tumours. Methods: A 6-year retrospective chart review of 79 patients with sepsis and solid tumour cancers and/or metastatic cancers admitted to the ICU was conducted. Information regarding mortality rate within 14 days, length of ICU stay, incidence of intubation, and other primary reasons for ICU admission was collected. Data was analysed using logistic regression. Results: Logistic regression results showed intubation as the only significant factor contributing to patient mortality (p < .001), with the odds of mortality being 12.3 times higher for intubated than non-intubated patients. Five-year cancer survival rate was the second best predictor (p = .082), while age, sex, and metastasis were also not significant predictive factors for survival. Intubated patients with poor prognosis cancers had the lowest survival chance as further indicated by the 16 patients who met this criterion, of which 14 died within two weeks of ICU admission. Conclusion: The fact that poor prognosis cancers in sepsis were not significantly predictive of ICU mortality supports current literature regarding solid tumors in general, while intubation being a significant predictor for mortality in patients with sepsis and cancer regardless of type builds on previous research. A limitation of this study is the relative low number of included cases with poor-prognosis cancer types. Further evaluation is needed to understand the implications of our results for end-of-life care and ICU admission for patients with these characteristics.
Head rotation causes compression and occlusion of the ipsilateral internal jugular (IJ) vein. This can result in raised intracranial pressure and increased bleeding if the patient is having or has recently had surgery. The amount of head rotation in adults resulting in occlusion of the ipsilateral IJ vein is unknown however. We measured the amount of head turn that produced occlusion of the ipsilateral IJ vein in 25 patients having surgery under general anesthesia. On average, 80% of IJ veins occlude at a mean of 55.6° on the left and 53.3° on the right.
Paediatric pulmonary hypertension has been described as a secondary complication of multiple diseases and their treatment. Limited information exists about the relationship between pulmonary hypertension and cancer in children. A review of charts was performed in all patients treated for cancer and developed pulmonary hypertension. A total of four patients developed pulmonary hypertension during treatment of cancer. All patients had solid tumors, had echocardiographic evidence of elevated right ventricular pressures, and required intensive care stays. Treatment courses included inhaled and oral pulmonary vasodilators along with systemic steroids. Each had normalisation of echocardiograms and resolution of pulmonary symptoms. Prompt diagnosis of pulmonary hypertension and treatment with pulmonary vasodilators and steroids are considered important measures followed by chemotherapy and radiation regimens.
Cardiac hydatid cysts are a rare presentation of hydatid cyst disease in the body, with a reported cardiac involvement rate of <2%. The left ventricle is the most common site of cardiac involvement. Here, we report a patient with a hydatid cyst that ruptured into the pericardium after producing an aneurysm on the right ventricular free wall, appearing as fibrinated fluid and a solid mass lesion in the pericardium. Our aim in this case report was to emphasise that the possibility of a hydatid cyst should not be overlooked in the differential diagnosis of pericardial tumours.
Purulent pericarditis occurs rarely in the current antibiotic era. We describe clinical and echocardiographic features of purulent pericarditis in a previously healthy child with influenza and community-acquired methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus co-infection. The child was already on appropriate antibiotics and had a very subtle clinical presentation, with prominent abdominal symptoms. Timely surgical drainage led to complete recovery.
In diffuse forms of arteriovenous malformation following Fontan procedure, “classical” medical therapy, inhaled nitric oxide and sildenafil, may play a role, until re-direction of hepatic flow to pulmonary circulation cures it. However, in refractory cases, as reported in our 2-year-old patient, unusual medications such as calcium channel blockers can be tried and continued if patients respond adequately.
Patients with tetralogy of Fallot, pulmonary atresia, and major aortopulmonary collaterals are at risk for prolonged hospitalisation after unifocalisation. Feeding problems after congenital heart surgery are associated with longer hospital stay. We sought to determine the impact of baseline, intra-operative, and postoperative factors on the need for feeding tube use at the time of discharge.
We included patients with the aforementioned diagnosis undergoing unifocalisation from ages 3 months to 4 years from 2010 to 2016. We excluded patients with a pre-existing feeding tube. Patients discharged with an enteric tube were included in the feeding tube group. We compared the feeding tube group with the non-feeding-tube group by univariable and multi-variable logistic regression.
Of the 56 patients studied, 41% used tube feeding. Median age and weight z-score were similar in the two groups. A chromosome 22q11 deletion was associated with the need for a feeding tube (22q11 deletion in 39% versus 15%, p=0.05). Median cardiopulmonary bypass time in the feeding tube group was longer (335 versus 244 minutes, p=0.04). Prolonged duration of mechanical ventilation was associated with feeding tube use (48 versus 3%, p=0.001). On multi-variable analysis, prolonged mechanical ventilation was associated with feeding tube use (odds ratio 10.2, 95% confidence intervals 1.6; 63.8).
Among patients with tetralogy of Fallot, pulmonary atresia, and major aortopulmonary collaterals who were feeding by mouth before surgery, prolonged mechanical ventilation after unifocalisation surgery was associated with feeding tube use at discharge. Anticipation of feeding problems in this population and earlier feeding tube placement may reduce hospital length of stay.
Pulmonary hypertension with transposition of the great arteries is associated with significant morbidity and mortality. At the worst end of the spectrum are patients who undergo extracorporeal support perioperatively. We describe our experience with three patients who received preoperative extracorporeal support and separated from cardiopulmonary bypass successfully on conventional postoperative care, with no significant deficits on follow-up.
Because the demand for intensive care unit (ICU) beds exceeds the supply in general, and because of the formidable costs of that level of care, clinicians face ethical issues when rationing this kind of care not only at the point of admission to the ICU, but also after the fact. Under what conditions—if any—may patients be denied admission to the ICU or removed after admission? One professional medical group has defended a rule of “first come, first served” in ICU admissions, and this approach has numerous moral considerations in its favor. We show, however, that admission to the ICU is not in and of itself guaranteed; we also show that as a matter of principle, it can be morally permissible to remove certain patients from the ICU, contrary to the idea that because they were admitted first, they are entitled to stay indefinitely through the point of recovery, death, or voluntary withdrawal. What remains necessary to help guide these kinds of decisions is the articulation of clear standards for discontinuing intensive care, and the articulation of these standards in a way consistent with not only fiduciary and legal duties that attach to clinical care but also with democratic decision making processes.
Few data are available regarding the use of metolazone in infants in cardiac intensive care. Researchers need to carry out further evaluation to characterise the effects of this treatment in this population.
This is a descriptive, retrospective study carried out in patients less than a year old. These infants had received metolazone over a 2-year period in the paediatric cardiac intensive care unit at our institution. The primary goal was to measure the change in urine output from 24 hours before the start of metolazone therapy to 24 hours after. Patient demographic variables, laboratory data, and fluid-balance data were analysed.
The study identified 97 infants with a mean age of 0.32±0.25 years. Their mean weight was 4.9±1.5 kg, and 58% of the participants were male. An overall 63% of them had undergone cardiovascular surgery. The baseline estimated creatinine clearance was 93±37 ml/minute/1.73 m2. Initially, the participants had received a metolazone dose of 0.27±0.10 mg/kg/day, the maximum dose being 0.43 mg/kg/day. They had also received other diuretics during metolazone initiation, such as furosemide (87.6%), spironolactone (58.8%), acetazolamide (11.3%), bumetanide (7.2%), and ethacrynic acid (1%). The median change in urine output after metolazone was 0.9 ml/kg/hour (interquartile range 0.15–1.9). The study categorised a total of 66 patients (68.0%) as responders. Multivariable analysis identified acetazolamide use (p=0.002) and increased fluid input in the 24 hours after metolazone initiation (p<0.001) as being significant for increased urine output. Changes in urine output were not associated with the dose of metolazone (p>0.05).
Metolazone increased urine output in a select group of patients. Efficacy can be maximised by strategic selection of patients.
Background: Critical illness polyneuropathy (CIN) and critical illness myopathy (CIM), together “ICU-Acquired weakness (ICUAW),” occur frequently in septic patients. One of the proposed mechanisms for ICUAW includes prolonged inactivation of sodium channels. Propofol, used commonly in patients with acute respiratory failure (ARF), primarily acts via enhancement of GABAergic transmission but may also increase sodium channel inactivation, suggesting a potential interaction. Methods: Electronic medical records and EMG reports of patients with ICUAW and a diagnosis of either sepsis, septicaemia, severe sepsis, or septic shock, concurrent with a diagnosis of acute respiratory failure (ARF), were retrospectively analyzed in a single center university hospital. Results: 74 cases were identified (50.0% men, age 58±14 years), and compared to age- and sex-matched controls. Of these, 51 (69%) had CIN, 19 (26%) had CIM, and 4 (5%) had both. Propofol exposure was significantly higher in patients with ICUAW compared to controls (63.5% vs. 33.8%, p<0.001). The odds ratio of developing ICUAW with propofol exposure was 3.4 (95% CI:1.7-6.7, p<0.001). Patients with ICUAW had significantly more days in hospital (59±44 vs. 30±23) and ICU (38±26 vs. 17±13), days dependent on mechanical ventilation (27±21 vs. 13±16), and rates of tracheostomy (79.7% vs. 36.5%) and gastrostomy (75.7% vs. 25.7%) (all p<0.001). They also received a significantly higher number of distinct intravenous antibiotics, cumulative days of antibiotic therapy, and exposure to vasopressors and paralytics. Conclusions: Propofol exposure may increase the risk of ICUAW in septic patients. An interaction through sodium channel inactivation is hypothesized.