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J Crit Care. 2012 Oct;27(5):525.e9-15. doi: 10.1016/j.jcrc.2011.10.013. Epub 2012 Jan 9.

Failure to reduce C-reactive protein levels more than 25% in the last 24 hours before intensive care unit discharge predicts higher in-hospital mortality: a cohort study.

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Medical Intensive Care Unit, Hospital das Clínicas, Faculdade de Medicina da Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil 05403-000.



To discharge a patient from the intensive care unit (ICU) is a complex decision-making process because in-hospital mortality after critical illness may be as high as up to 27%. Static C-reactive protein (CRP) values have been previously evaluated as a predictor of post-ICU mortality with conflicting results. Therefore, we evaluated the CRP ratio in the last 24 hours before ICU discharge as a predictor of in-hospital outcomes.


A retrospective cohort study was performed in 409 patients from a 6-bed ICU of a university hospital. Data were prospectively collected during a 4-year period. Only patients discharged alive from the ICU with at least 72 hours of ICU length of stay were evaluated.


In-hospital mortality was 18.3% (75/409). Patients with reduction less than 25% in CRP concentrations at 24 hours as compared with 48 hours before ICU discharge had a worse prognosis, with increased mortality (23% vs 11%, P = .002) and post-ICU length of stay (26 [7-43] vs 11 [5-27] days, P = .036). Moreover, among hospital survivors (n = 334), patients with CRP reduction less than 25% were discharged later (hazard ratio, 0.750; 95% confidence interval, 0.602-0.935; P = .011).


In this large cohort of critically ill patients, failure to reduce CRP values more than 25% in the last 24 hours of ICU stay is a strong predictor of worse in-hospital outcomes.

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