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Clin Infect Dis. 2016 Dec 1;63(11):1449-1455. Epub 2016 Sep 8.

Effects of Corticosteroids on Critically Ill Pulmonary Tuberculosis Patients With Acute Respiratory Failure: A Propensity Analysis of Mortality.

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Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine, Busan Paik Hospital, Inje University College of Medicine, Busan.
Department of Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics.
Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Asan Medical Center, Seoul, South Korea.



 We investigated the effects of corticosteroids on the 90-day mortality outcomes in patients with pulmonary tuberculosis who were admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU) because of acute respiratory failure (ARF).


 The medical records of 124 patients who had pulmonary tuberculosis with ARF and were admitted to the ICU at our tertiary referral center in South Korea between March 1989 and December 2014 were retrospectively analyzed. The 90-day mortality rate in this population was analyzed after adjustments with the inverse probability of treatment weighted (IPTW) method.


 The mean patient age was 62 years, and the 90-day mortality rate was 49.2% (61/124). Adjuvant steroids were used in 70 (56.5%) patients. The 90-day mortality rate was similar irrespective of corticosteroid use (48.6%, steroid group; 50.0%, nonsteroid group). The use of adjuvant steroids was not associated with the unadjusted 90-day mortality (odds ratio [OR], 0.94; 95% confidence interval [CI], .46-1.92; P = .875). In a comparison using an adjusted IPTW approach of the 90-day mortality between the 2 groups, we found that corticosteroid use was independently associated with reduced 90-day mortality (OR, 0.47; 95% CI, .22-.98; P = .049).


 The study results showed that corticosteroids could reduce the 90-day mortality rate in critically ill pulmonary tuberculosis patients with ARF.


acute respiratory failure; corticosteroids; intensive care unit; mortality; pulmonary tuberculosis

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