Sepsis involved in high percentage of hospital deaths

An analysis that included approximately 7 million hospitalizations finds that sepsis contributed to 1 in every 2 to 3 deaths, and most of these patients had sepsis at admission, according to a study published by JAMA. The study is being released early online to coincide with its presentation at the American Thoracic Society International Conference.

Sepsis, the inflammatory response to infection, affects millions of worldwide. However, its effect on overall hospital mortality has not been fully measured, according to background information in the article.

Vincent Liu, M.D., M.S., of the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research, Oakland, and colleagues quantified the contribution of sepsis to mortality in 2 inpatient groups from Kaiser Permanente Northern California (KPNC) and the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project Nationwide Inpatient Sample (NIS). The KPNC cohort included 482,828 adults with overnight, nonobstetrical hospitalizations at 21 KPNC hospitals between 2010 and 2012. The NIS, a nationally representative sample of 1,051 hospitals, included 6.5 million adult hospitalizations in 2010. Two approaches were used to identify patients with sepsis: explicit (those with certain sepsis-related codes); and implicit (patients with evidence of both infection and acute organ failure).

Of 14,206 KPNC inpatient deaths, 36.9 percent (explicit) to 55.9 percent (implicit) occurred among patients with sepsis, which was nearly all present on admission. Of 143,312 NIS deaths, 34.7 percent (explicit) to 52.0 percent (implicit) occurred among patients with sepsis. In a 2012 KPNC subset, patients with sepsis meeting criteria for early goal-directed therapy (n = 2,536) comprised 32.6 percent of sepsis deaths.

"Given the prominent role it plays in hospital mortality, improved treatment of sepsis could offer meaningful improvements in population mortality," the authors write.

The researchers note that patients with initially less made up the majority of sepsis deaths. "Performance improvement efforts in the treatment of sepsis have primarily focused on standardizing care for the most severely ill patients, whereas interventions for treating other patients with sepsis are less well defined. Given their prevalence, improving standardized care for patients with less severe could drive future reductions in ."

More information: DOI: 10.1001/jama.2014.5804

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Study shows decrease in sepsis mortality rates

Nov 13, 2013

A recent study from Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) and Boston Medical Center (BMC) shows a significant decrease in severe sepsis mortality rates over the past 20 years. Looking at data from patients with severe ...

Recommended for you

Depression tied to worse lumbar spine surgery outcomes

2 hours ago

(HealthDay)—Depressive symptoms are associated with poorer long-term outcome in patients undergoing surgery for lumbar spinal stenosis (LSS), according to research published in the Oct. 1 issue of The Sp ...

Ebola death toll edging to 4,900 mark: WHO

2 hours ago

The death toll in the world's worst-ever Ebola outbreak has edged closer to 4,900, while almost 10,000 people have now been infected, new figures from the World Health Organization showed Wednesday.

US to track everyone coming from Ebola nations

3 hours ago

U.S. authorities said Wednesday that everyone traveling into the U.S. from Ebola-stricken nations will be monitored for symptoms for 21 days. That includes returning American aid workers, federal health employees ...

US: Monitoring for all coming from Ebola nations

5 hours ago

U.S. health officials said Wednesday that they would begin monitoring all travelers—even Americans—who come to the U.S. from Ebola-stricken West African nations for 21 days, significantly expanding their vigilance.

User comments