Category Archives: JCCM 2021

The Impact of Hyperoxia Treatment on Neurological Outcomes and Mortality in Moderate to Severe Traumatic Brain Injured patients

DOI: 10.2478/jccm-2021-0014

Background: Traumatic brain injury is a leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. The relationship between hyperoxia and outcomes in patients with TBI remains controversial. We assessed the effect of persistent hyperoxia on the neurological outcomes and survival of critically ill patients with moderate-severe TBI.
Method: This was a retrospective cohort study of all adults with moderate-severe TBI admitted to the ICU between 1st January 2016 and 31st December 2019 and who required invasive mechanical ventilation. Arterial blood gas data was recorded within the first 3 hours of intubation and then after 6-12 hours and 24-48 hours. The patients were divided into two categories: Group I had a PaO2 < 120mmHg on at least two ABGs undertaken in the first twelve hours post intubation and Group II had a PaO2 ≥ 120mmHg on at least two ABGs in the same period. Multivariable logistic regression was performed to assess predictors of hospital mortality and good neurologic outcome (Glasgow outcome score ≥ 4).
Results: The study included 309 patients: 54.7% (n=169) in Group I and 45.3% (n=140) in Group II. Hyperoxia was not associated with increased mortality in the ICU (20.1% vs. 17.9%, p=0.62) or hospital (20.7% vs. 17.9%, p=0.53), moreover, the hospital discharge mean (SD) Glasgow Coma Scale (11.0(5.1) vs. 11.2(4.9), p=0.70) and mean (SD) Glasgow Outcome Score (3.1(1.3) vs. 3.1(1.2), p=0.47) were similar. In multivariable logistic regression analysis, persistent hyperoxia was not associated with increased mortality (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] 0.71, 95% CI 0.34-1.35, p=0.29). PaO2 within the first 3 hours was also not associated with mortality: 121-200mmHg: aOR 0.58, 95% CI 0.23-1.49, p=0.26; 201-300mmHg: aOR 0.66, 95% CI 0.27-1.59, p=0.35; 301-400mmHg: aOR 0.85, 95% CI 0.31-2.35, p=0.75 and >400mmHg: aOR 0.51, 95% CI 0.18-1.44, p=0.20; reference: PaO2 60-120mmHg within 3 hours. However, hyperoxia >400mmHg was associated with being less likely to have good neurological (GOS ≥4) outcome on hospital discharge (aOR 0.36, 95% CI 0.13-0.98, p=0.046; reference: PaO2 60-120mmHg within 3 hours.
Conclusion: In intubated patients with moderate-severe TBI, hyperoxia in the first 48 hours was not independently associated with hospital mortality. However, PaO2 >400mmHg may be associated with a worse neurological outcome on hospital discharge.

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COVID -19 complicated by Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome, Myocarditis, and Pulmonary Embolism. A case report

DOI: 10.2478/jccm-2020-0041

A 49-year-old female Qatari woman, with no past medical history, presented at a hospital complaining of a history of cough and shortness of breath. The patient tested positive for severe acute respiratory syndrome (ARDS) and COVID-19. Subsequently, her course of treatment was complicated by severe acute respiratory distress syndrome, pulmonary embolism and severe myocarditis requiring treatment with venous-arterial extracorporeal membrane oxygenation as a bridge to complete recovery.

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Challenges in Management of the Brain-Dead Organ Donor During the COVID-19 Pandemic

DOI: 10.2478/jccm-2021-0013

Starting in Wuhan, China [1], the infection caused by the novel SARS-CoV-2 virus became a public health issue when, due to the extreme contagiousness of this virus, a pandemic has been declared [2], putting a strain on both the global medical staff as well as the authorities in an effort to better manage an unprecedented situation in the modern era. Looking at the society we are living in, we can easily see that the COVID-19 pandemic has brought impressive social, economic, political, cultural and medical changes as well as personal ones; I believe that the perspectives and priorities of many of us have changed.
Before discussing the transplant activity, mainly the one regarding diagnosis and maintenance of the brain-dead organ donor patient, an activity that has been carried out for many years in Anesthesiology and Intensive Care Clinics, to which many of us are devoted, practicing it with deep respect, we need to review the daily activity. As is well known, the work effort in intensive care units is extremely demanding both mentally and physically. It involves the care of critical patients with severe decompensated pathologies, requiring maximum therapeutic management, special attention, continuous specific monitoring as well as the use of advanced medical and pharmacological techniques. The new measures and regulations, personal protective equipment, structural changes and working protocols implemented to prevent and limit COVID-19 infection, as well as the rigors imposed by the care of these patients have created additional stress for the medical staff. [More]

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Prevalence of Depression, Anxiety and Stress among Patients Discharged from Critical Care Units

DOI: 10.2478/jccm-2021-0012

Introduction: The widespread use of advanced technology and invasive intervention creates many psychological problems for hospitalized patients; it is especially common in critical care units.
Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted on 310 patients hospitalized in critical care units, using a non-probability sampling method. Data were collected using depression, anxiety, and stress scale (DASS-21) one month after discharge from the hospital. Data analysis was performed using descriptive and inferential statistics.
Results: 181 males and 129 females with a mean age (SD) of 55.11(1.62) years were enrolled in the study. The prevalence of depression, anxiety and stress were 46.5, 53.6 and 57.8% respectively, and the depression, anxiety and stress mean (SD) scores were 16.15(1.40), 18.57(1.46), 19.69(1.48), respectively. A statistically significant association was reported between depression, anxiety and stress with an increase in age, the number of children, occupation, education, length of hospital stay, use of mechanical ventilation, type of the critical care unit, and drug abuse.
Conclusion: The prevalence of depression, anxiety and stress in patients discharged from critical care units was high. Therefore, crucial decisions should be made to reduce depression, anxiety and stress in patients discharged from critical care units by educational strategies, identifying vulnerable patients and their preparation before invasive diagnostic-treatment procedures.

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Effect of Early versus Delayed Parenteral Nutrition on the Health Outcomes of Critically Ill Adults: A Systematic Review

DOI: 10.2478/jccm-2021-0011

Objectives: This systematic review aims to evaluate and summarise the findings of all relevant studies which identified the effect of early vs delayed parenteral nutrition (PN), early PN vs early supplemental PN and early PN vs standard care for critically ill adults.
Methods: The literature search was undertaken using PubMed, Embase, Medline, Clinical Key, and Ovid discovery databases. The reference lists of studies published from 2000 till June 2020 were hand searched.
Result: On screening 2088 articles, a total of five RCTs with 6,277 patients were included in this review. Only one clinical trial compared early PN and late PN; the results reported significantly shorter periods in intensive care unit (ICU) stay (p=0.02) and less ICU related infections (p=0.008) in the late PN group compared to the Early PN group. Two trials compared total parenteral nutrition (TPN) and enteral nutrition (EN) +TPN groups. Both found a significantly longer hospital stay duration (p<0.05 and p<0.01) with a higher mortality rate in the TPN group compared to the EN+TPN group. A statistically significant improvement was observed in patients’ quality of life receiving early PN compared to standard care (p=0.01). In contrast, no significant difference was found in the supplemental PN vs the standard care group.
Conclusion: The supplemental PN patients had shorter ICU stay and lower mortality rates than TPN. However, these findings should be interpreted carefully as included studies have different initiation timing of nutritional support, and the patients’ diagnosis varied.
Systematic review registration: PROSPERO: CRD42020183175

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Contrast Medium-Induced Encephalopathy after Coronary Angiography – Case Report

DOI: 10.2478/jccm-2021-0010

Introduction: Contrast-induced encephalopathy represents a rare, reversible complication that appears after intravenous or intra-arterial exposure to contrast agents. There is no consensus in the literature regarding the mechanism of action. However, the theoretical mechanism is set around the disruption of the blood-brain barrier and the contrast agents’ chemical properties.
Case report: The case of a 70-year-old patient, known to have hypertension and type 2 diabetes mellitus is reported. The patient had undergone a diagnostic coronary angiography during which he received 100ml of Ioversol (Optiray 350™). Soon after the procedure, the patient began experiencing a throbbing headache, followed by intense behavioural changes and aggressive tendencies. He was transferred to the Neurology Clinic. The neurological examination was without focal neurological signs; however, the patient was very aggressive and uncooperative. The CT scan revealed a mild hyper-density in the frontal lobes. MRI scan revealed no pathological changes. Conservative treatment with diuretics and hydration was administered, and the patient experienced a complete resolution of symptoms in 72 hours.
Conclusion: Contrast-induced encephalopathy is a possible secondary complication to contrast agents and a diagnostic challenge, and it should not be overlooked, especially following procedures that use contrast agents.

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The Removal of a Fractured Guidewire During Mechanical Thrombectomy. A Case Report

DOI: 10.2478/jccm-2021-0009

Recent randomized controlled trials have transformed the treatment of acute ischemic stroke. Mechanical or aspiration thrombectomy is the main treatment option for occlusions of large intracranial vessels. Despite its high technical success rate, endovascular thrombectomy can sometimes be complicated by anatomical peculiarities or device failures. The most frequent complications are related to vessel dissection or vessel perforation by devices while navigating intricate anatomy. Rarer still are technical device failures, like spontaneous stent-retriever detachment, which occurred with older generation retrievers. This case reports a rare device failure, which, to the best of our knowledge, has not been reported in the literature so far, namely a microwire fracture in the middle cerebral artery. This was successfully removed with an Eric stent-retriever. The potential causes and possible management strategies are discussed.

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Renal Recovery in Critically Ill Adult Patients Treated With Veno-Venous or Veno-Arterial Extra Corporeal Membrane Oxygenation: A Retrospective Cohort Analysis

DOI: 10.2478/jccm-2021-0006

Introduction: Patients on extracorporeal membrane oxygenator (ECMO) therapy are critically ill and often develop acute kidney injury (AKI) during hospitalisation. Little is known about the association of exposure to and the effect of the type of ECMO and extent of renal recovery after AKI development. Aim of the study: In patients who developed AKI, renal recovery was characterised as complete, partial or dialysis-dependent at the time of hospital discharge in both the Veno-Arterial (VA) and Veno-Venous (VV) ECMO treatment groups.
Material and methods: The study consisted of a single-centre retrospective cohort that includes all adult patients (n=125) who received ECMO treatment at a tertiary academic medical centre between 2015 to 2019. Data on demographics, type of ECMO circuit, comorbidities, exposure to nephrotoxic factors and receipt of renal replacement therapy (RRT) were collected as a part of the analysis. Acute Kidney Injury Network (AKIN) criteria were used for the diagnosis and classification of AKI. Group differences were assessed using Fisher’s exact tests for categorical data and independent t-tests for continuous outcomes.
Results: Sixty-four patients received VA ECMO, and 58 received VV ECMO. AKI developed in 58(91%) in the VA ECMO group and 51 (88%) in the VV ECMO group (p=0.77). RRT was prescribed in significantly higher numbers in the VV group 38 (75%) compared to the VA group 27 (47%) (p=0.0035). At the time of discharge, AKI recovery rate in the VA group consisted of 15 (26%) complete recovery and 5 (9%) partial recovery; 1 (2%) remained dialysis-dependent. In the VV group, 22 (43%) had complete recovery (p=0.07), 3(6%) had partial recovery (p=0.72), and 1 (2%) was dialysis-dependent (p>0.99). In-hospital mortality was 64% in the VA group and 49% in the VV group (p=0.13).
Conclusions: Renal outcomes in critically ill patients who develop AKI are not associated with the type of ECMO used. This serves as preliminary data for future studies in the area.

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Perioperative Management of Pulmonary Hypertension. A Review

DOI: 10.2478/jccm-2021-0007

Pulmonary hypertension is a rare and progressive pathology defined by abnormally high pulmonary artery pressure mediated by a diverse range of aetiologies. It affects up to twenty-six individuals per one million patients currently living in the United Kingdom (UK), with a median life expectancy of 2.8 years in idiopathic pulmonary hypertension. The diagnosis of pulmonary hypertension is often delayed due to the presentation of non-specific symptoms, leading to a delay in referral to specialists services. The complexity of treatment necessitates a multidisciplinary approach, underpinned by a diverse disease aetiology from managing the underlying disease process to novel specialist treatments. This has led to the formation of dedicated specialist treatment centres within centralised UK cities. The article aimed to provide a concise overview of pulmonary hypertension’s clinical perioperative management, including key definitions, epidemiology, pathophysiology, and risk stratification.

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