Ventilator-associated pneumonia: epidemiology and impact on the clinical evolution of ICU patients

Pedro Mendes de Azambuja Rodrigues, Edgard do Carmo Neto, Luiz Rodrigo de Carneiro Santos, Marcos Freitas Knibel
Jornal Brasileiro de Pneumologia: Publicaça̋o Oficial da Sociedade Brasileira de Pneumologia e Tisilogia 2009, 35 (11): 1084-91

OBJECTIVE: Although ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) is a major cause of nosocomial infection, its role in the prognosis of patients remains undefined. The objective of this study was to evaluate the impact of VAP on the clinical evolution of patients.

METHODS: This was a prospective cohort study involving 233 patients on mechanical ventilation (VAP group, n = 64; control group, n = 169). Primary outcomes were time on mechanical ventilation (TMV), time in ICU (TICU), overall length of hospital stay (LHS) and in-ICU mortality. Secondary outcomes were in-hospital mortality, microbiological profile, prior use of antibiotics and risk factors for VAP acquisition.

RESULTS: Control and VAP group outcomes were, respectively, as follows: median TMV (days), 9 (interquartile range [IQR]: 5-15) and 23 (IQR: 15-37; p < 0.0001); median TICU (days), 12 (IQR: 8-21) and 27 (IQR: 17-42; p < 0.0001); median LHS (days), 33 (IQR: 18-64) and 46 (IQR: 25-90; p = 0.05); and in-ICU mortality, 38% (95% CI: 31-45) and 55% (95% CI: 42-67; p = 0.02). VAP was a predictor of in-ICU mortality (OR = 3.40; 95% CI: 1.54-7.48). TMV (OR = 2.27; 95% CI: 1.05-4.87) and prior use of antibiotics (OR = 1.07; 95% CI: 1.04-1.10) were risk factors for VAP. VAP did not affect in-hospital mortality. Acinetobacter spp. was the most common isolate (28%). Inappropriate empirical antibiotic therapy was administered in 48% of cases.

CONCLUSIONS: In this study, there was a high incidence of infection with resistant bacteria and inappropriate initial antibiotic therapy. Long TMV and prior use of antibiotics are risk factors for VAP.

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