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Intensive Care Med. 2007 Dec;33(12):2150-7. Epub 2007 Jul 25.

Life-threatening adverse drug reactions at admission to medical intensive care: a prospective study in a teaching hospital.

Author information

1
Université Victor Segalen Bordeaux 2, INSERM U657, 146 rue Léo Saignat, 33075 Bordeaux cedex, France.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To assess the characteristics of life-threatening adverse drug reactions in patients admitted to medical intensive care unit and to define those that could facilitate early identification.

DESIGN:

A prospective 6-month observational study.

PATIENTS:

Of the 436 admissions to the teaching hospital medical intensive care unit, all patients aged over 15 years and who had received documented drug treatment were included (n = 405).

MEASUREMENTS:

Characteristics of patients [age, gender, underlying diseases, organ failure(s), drugs taken, Severity Acute Physiologic Score II, length of stay, outcome at discharge] were prospectively collected using a standardised questionnaire. A panel of experts assessed putative serious adverse drug reaction(s) for each drug taken and each organ failure at admission by using a standardised causality assessment method. Characteristics of patients with and without serious adverse drug reactions at admission were compared using univariate and then stepwise descending multivariate logistic regression.

RESULTS:

Of the 405 patients included, 111 (27.4%) presented an adverse drug reaction leading to organ failure. In 48% of cases adverse drug reactions were preventable, 23% were undiagnosed and 19% contributed to death. Age over 75 years [odds ratio (OR) 2.25; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.15-4.38; p = 0.02], having more than three drugs (OR 6.90; 95% CI 1.44-33.00; p = 0.02) and a diagnosis of haematological malignancy (OR 6.19; 95% CI 2.07-18.53; p = 0.001) were independently associated with serious adverse drug reactions.

CONCLUSIONS:

Preventable life-threatening adverse drug reactions were frequently involved in organ failure at admission to medical intensive care; many of them had not been identified.

PMID:
17653528
DOI:
10.1007/s00134-007-0787-8
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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