Prognostic Value of Serum Lactate Levels in Critically Ill Patients in an Intensive Care Unit

DOI: 10.2478/jccm-2020-0005

Introduction: The patient in critical condition, regardless of the cause of admission, continues to be a challenge for health systems due to the high mortality that it reports. There is a need to identify some marker of early obtaining, easy to interpret and with high relevance in the prognosis of these patients.
Objective: To determine the prognostic value of serum lactate in an Intensive Care Unit (ICU).
Method: One hundred and forty-five patients admitted to an ICU were enrolled in the study. The Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation II (APACHE) prognosis score, Sequential Organ Failure Assessment, hemodynamic support need, mechanical ventilation, cause of admission, stay in ICU, analytical and physiological variables were determined. The probability of survival of patients who had elevated and normal serum lactate levels was calculated. The risk of dying was determined using the Cox regression model.
Results: Twenty-eight patients died (19%) in the ICU. The serum lactate value was higher in the group of patients with trauma, infections, APACHE II and high creatinine levels; as well as with decreased mean arterial blood pressure, need for hemodynamic support and mechanical ventilation. The survival capacity was higher in patients who had normal serum lactate. Serum lactate was the sole independent predictor of mortality (AHR 1.28 [1.07-1.53], p = 0.008).
Conclusions: Patient assessment through the determination of serum lactate levels provides useful information in the initial evaluation of the critical patient.

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