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Minerva Anestesiol ; 87(10): 1080-1090, 2021 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1337893


BACKGROUND: COVID-19 patients developing the acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) show increased production of pro-inflammatory cytokines, including interleukin-6 (IL-6). The use of humanized monoclonal antibody against interleukin-6 receptor (IL-6R) may represent a potential treatment strategy. We analyzed the effects of compassionate use of tocilizumab and sarilumab on clinical outcome of patients affected by ARDS due COVID-19. METHODS: This single-center, observational, exploratory study was performed during the acute phase of COVID-19 outbreak, between March 7th and April 21st, 2020 in a University Hospital in Rome, Italy. All consecutive adult patients admitted to the intensive care unit with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 and fulfilling ARDS criteria were enrolled. Patients who were treated with anti-IL-6R therapy were compared to those who were not, as per clinical decision. Inverse probability weights were applied to weight individual's contribution to survival curves and in the multivariate regression model. RESULTS: Among 105 ARDS patients, 65 received compassionate treatment with anti-IL-6R therapy (43 [66%] Tocilizumab [Hoffmann-La Roche, Basel, Switzerland] and 22 [34%] Sarilumab, respectively], with oxygenation improvement. In the multivariable Cox proportional regression hazards model with propensity score inverse probability weighting, patients who received anti-IL-6R treatment had lower risk of death compared to those who did not, with a hazard ration of 0.34 [95% confidence interval 0.17-0.74], P=0.001. CONCLUSIONS: Our data suggested that immune modulator therapy based on anti-human IL-6 receptor monoclonal antibodies might lead to improved outcome in patients with ARDS due to COVID-19. These data support the need for confirmatory randomized trials to assess the effect of immune modulator therapies on mortality.

COVID-19 , Respiratory Distress Syndrome , Adult , Compassionate Use Trials , Critical Illness , Humans , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/drug therapy , SARS-CoV-2
Minerva Anestesiol ; 87(9): 1006-1016, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1311484


BACKGROUND: The aim of this study is to determine relationships between lung aeration assessed by lung ultrasound (LUS) with non-invasive ventilation (NIMV) outcome, intensive care unit (ICU) admission and mechanical ventilation (MV) needs in COVID-19 respiratory failure. METHODS: A cohort of adult patients with COVID-19 respiratory failure underwent LUS during initial assessment. A simplified LUS protocol consisting in scanning six areas, three for each side, was adopted. A score from 0 to 3 was assigned to each area. Comprehensive LUS score (LUSsc) was calculated as the sum of the score in all areas. LUSsc, the amount of involved sonographic lung areas (LUSq), the number of lung quadrants radiographically infiltrated and the degree of oxygenation impairment at admission (SpO2/FiO2 ratio) were compared to NIMV Outcome, MV needs and ICU admission. RESULTS: Among 85 patients prospectively included in the analysis, 49 of 61 needed MV. LUSsc and LUSq were higher in patients who required MV (median 12 [IQR 8-14] and median 6 [IQR 4-6], respectively) than in those who did not (6 [IQR 2-9] and 3 [IQR 1-5], respectively), both P<0.001. NIMV trial failed in 26 patients out 36. LUSsc and LUSq were significantly higher in patients who failed NIMV than in those who did not. From ROC analysis, LUSsc ≥12 and LUSq ≥5 gave the best cut-off values for NIMV failure prediction (AUC=0.95, 95%CI 0.83-0.99 and AUC=0.81, 95% CI 0.65-0.91, respectively). CONCLUSIONS: Our data suggest LUS as a possible tool for identifying patients who are likely to require MV and ICU admission or to fail a NIMV trial.

COVID-19 , Noninvasive Ventilation , Respiratory Insufficiency , Adult , Humans , Lung/diagnostic imaging , Pilot Projects , Respiratory Insufficiency/diagnostic imaging , Respiratory Insufficiency/therapy , SARS-CoV-2
Am J Trop Med Hyg ; 104(5): 1676-1686, 2021 Mar 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1128113


Non-intubated patients with acute respiratory failure due to COVID-19 could benefit from awake proning. Awake proning is an attractive intervention in settings with limited resources, as it comes with no additional costs. However, awake proning remains poorly used probably because of unfamiliarity and uncertainties regarding potential benefits and practical application. To summarize evidence for benefit and to develop a set of pragmatic recommendations for awake proning in patients with COVID-19 pneumonia, focusing on settings where resources are limited, international healthcare professionals from high and low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) with known expertise in awake proning were invited to contribute expert advice. A growing number of observational studies describe the effects of awake proning in patients with COVID-19 pneumonia in whom hypoxemia is refractory to simple measures of supplementary oxygen. Awake proning improves oxygenation in most patients, usually within minutes, and reduces dyspnea and work of breathing. The effects are maintained for up to 1 hour after turning back to supine, and mostly disappear after 6-12 hours. In available studies, awake proning was not associated with a reduction in the rate of intubation for invasive ventilation. Awake proning comes with little complications if properly implemented and monitored. Pragmatic recommendations including indications and contraindications were formulated and adjusted for resource-limited settings. Awake proning, an adjunctive treatment for hypoxemia refractory to supplemental oxygen, seems safe in non-intubated patients with COVID-19 acute respiratory failure. We provide pragmatic recommendations including indications and contraindications for the use of awake proning in LMICs.

COVID-19/complications , Hypoxia/therapy , Prone Position/physiology , Respiratory Insufficiency/therapy , SARS-CoV-2 , Acute Disease , Continuous Positive Airway Pressure , Health Personnel , Humans , Wakefulness