The Impact of Delirium on Clinical Outcomes in MechanicallyVentilated Surgical and Trauma Patients


Ishaq Lat, Wes McMillian, Scott Taylor, Jeff M. Janzen, Stella Papadopoulos, Laura Korth, As’ad Ehtisham, Joe Nold, Suresh Agarwal, Ruben Azocar, Peter Burke



Crit Care Med 2009 Vol. 37, No. 6



 Objective: previously, delirium has been identified as an independent risk factor for mortality in critically ill medical patients. We undertook this study to examine the relationships among medication usage, delirium, and clinical outcomes in a critically ill surgical/trauma population.

Design: prospective, multicentered, observational study.

Setting: two surgical intensive care units in level 1 trauma centers.

Patients: one hundred thirty-four consecutive surgical adult patients requiring mechanical ventilation (MV) for greater than 24 hours.

Interventions: daily delirium assessment with the Confusion Assessment Method-Intensive Care Unit tool, outcomes assessment, and prospective data collection.

Measurement and Main Results: of the 134 patients who met inclusion criteria, 84 patients (63%) developed delirium at some point during their intensive care unit (ICU) stay. Delirium was associated with more MV days (9.1 vs. 4.9 days, p < 0.01), longer ICU stay (12.2 vs. 7.4 days, p < 0.01), longer hospital stay (20.6 vs. 14.7 days, p < 0.01). Additionally, greater cumulative lorazepam dose (p _ 0.012), and higher cumulative fentanyl dose (p _ 0.035) were administered in the delirium group.

Conclusions: delirium in the surgical/trauma ICU cohort is independently associated with more days requiring MV, longer ICU length of stay, and longer hospital length of stay. Additionally, greater amounts of lorazepam and fentanyl were administered to patients with delirium.



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