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J Intern Med ; 292(3): 438-449, 2022 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1774862


BACKGROUND: Previous studies reported regional differences in end-of-life care (EoLC) for critically ill patients in Europe. OBJECTIVES: The purpose of this post-hoc analysis of the prospective multicentre COVIP study was to investigate variations in EoLC practices among older patients in intensive care units during the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic. METHODS: A total of 3105 critically ill patients aged 70 years and older were enrolled in this study (Central Europe: n = 1573; Northern Europe: n = 821; Southern Europe: n = 711). Generalised estimation equations were used to calculate adjusted odds ratios (aORs) to population averages. Data were adjusted for patient-specific variables (demographic, disease-specific) and health economic data (gross domestic product, health expenditure per capita). The primary outcome was any treatment limitation, and 90-day mortality was a secondary outcome. RESULTS: The frequency of the primary endpoint (treatment limitation) was highest in Northern Europe (48%), intermediate in Central Europe (39%) and lowest in Southern Europe (24%). The likelihood for treatment limitations was lower in Southern than in Central Europe (aOR 0.39; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.21-0.73; p = 0.004), even after multivariable adjustment, whereas no statistically significant differences were observed between Northern and Central Europe (aOR 0.57; 95%CI 0.27-1.22; p = 0.15). After multivariable adjustment, no statistically relevant mortality differences were found between Northern and Central Europe (aOR 1.29; 95%CI 0.80-2.09; p = 0.30) or between Southern and Central Europe (aOR 1.07; 95%CI 0.66-1.73; p = 0.78). CONCLUSION: This study shows a north-to-south gradient in rates of treatment limitation in Europe, highlighting the heterogeneity of EoLC practices across countries. However, mortality rates were not affected by these results.

COVID-19 , Terminal Care , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/therapy , Critical Illness/epidemiology , Critical Illness/therapy , Europe/epidemiology , Humans , Intensive Care Units , Prospective Studies
Respir Care ; 66(5): 814-821, 2021 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1395146


BACKGROUND: The growing proportion of elderly intensive care patients constitutes a public health challenge. The benefit of critical care in these patients remains unclear. We compared outcomes in elderly versus very elderly subjects receiving mechanical ventilation. METHODS: In total, 5,557 mechanically ventilated subjects were included in our post hoc retrospective analysis, a subgroup of the VENTILA study. We divided the cohort into 2 subgroups on the basis of age: very elderly subjects (age ≥ 80 y; n = 1,430), and elderly subjects (age 65-79 y; n = 4,127). A propensity score on being very elderly was calculated. Evaluation of associations with 28-d mortality was done with logistic regression analysis. RESULTS: Very elderly subjects were clinically sicker as expressed by higher SAPS II scores (53 ± 18 vs 50 ± 18, P < .001), and their rates of plateau pressure < 30 cm H2O were higher, whereas other parameters did not differ. The 28-d mortality was higher in very elderly subjects (42% vs 34%, P < .001) and remained unchanged after propensity score adjustment (adjusted odds ratio 1.31 [95% CI 1.16-1.49], P < .001). CONCLUSIONS: Age was an independent and unchangeable risk factor for death in mechanically ventilated subjects. However, survival rates of very elderly subjects were > 50%. Denial of critical care based solely on age is not justified. ( registration NCT02731898.).

Critical Illness , Respiration, Artificial , Aged , Humans , Intensive Care Units , Retrospective Studies , Risk Factors , Simplified Acute Physiology Score