COMPARATIVE STUDY
JOURNAL ARTICLE

Does fast-track treatment lead to a decrease of intensive care unit and hospital length of stay in coronary artery bypass patients? A meta-regression of randomized clinical trials

Ghislaine A P G van Mastrigt, Jos G Maessen, John Heijmans, Johan L Severens, Martin H Prins
Critical Care Medicine 2006, 34 (6): 1624-34
16614584

OBJECTIVE: Evaluation of randomized, controlled clinical trials studying fast-track treatment in low-risk coronary artery bypass grafting patients.

DESIGN: Meta-regression.

PATIENTS: Low-risk coronary artery bypass grafting patients.

INTERVENTIONS: Fast-track treatments including (high or low) anesthetic dose, normothermia vs. hypothermia, and extubation protocol (within or after 8 hrs).

MEASUREMENTS: Number of hours of intensive care unit stay, number of days of hospital stay, prevalence of myocardial infarction, and death. Furthermore, quality of life and cost evaluations were evaluated. The epidemiologic and economic qualities of the different trials were also assessed.

MAIN RESULTS: A total of 27 studies evaluating fast-track treatment were identified, of which 12 studies were with major and 15 were without major differences in extubation protocol or anesthetic treatment or both. The use of an early extubation protocol (p=.000) but not the use of a low anesthetic dose (p=.394) or normothermic temperature management (p=.552) resulted in a decrease of the total intensive care unit stay of low-risk coronary artery bypass grafting patients. Early extubation was found to be an important determinant of the total hospital stay for these patients. An influence of the type of fast-track treatment on mortality or the prevalence of postoperative myocardial infarction was not observed. In general, the epidemiologic and economic qualities of included studies were moderate.

CONCLUSIONS: Although fast-track anesthetics and normothermic temperature management facilitate early extubation, the introduction of an early extubation protocol seems essential to decrease intensive care unit and hospital stay in low-risk coronary artery bypass grafting patients.

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