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VOLUME 25 , ISSUE 1 ( January, 2021 ) > List of Articles


Hyperglycemia Risk Evaluation of Hydrocortisone Intermittent Boluses vs Continuous Infusion in Septic Shock: A Retrospective Study

Hassan Mitwally, Mohamed O Saad, Sara Mahmoud, Adham Mohamed

Citation Information : Mitwally H, Saad MO, Mahmoud S, Mohamed A. Hyperglycemia Risk Evaluation of Hydrocortisone Intermittent Boluses vs Continuous Infusion in Septic Shock: A Retrospective Study. Indian J Crit Care Med 2021; 25 (1):29-33.

DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-23501

License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published Online: 18-01-2021

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2021; The Author(s).


Introduction: Hydrocortisone showed to be effective in reducing the time until reversal of shock when added to standard therapy in managing septic shock. Hyperglycemia is one of the common adverse effects associated with corticosteroid treatment. However, the difference in hyperglycemia risk with different methods of hydrocortisone administration is not clear. The objective of this study was to evaluate the risk of hyperglycemia of intermittent hydrocortisone boluses vs continuous infusion in septic shock patients. Materials and methods: This was a retrospective observational study. Data were collected from the electronic medical records of eligible patients admitted to intensive care units. All patients admitted with septic shock who received noradrenaline and hydrocortisone were included. Only patients who exceeded 200 mg/day of hydrocortisone were excluded. The primary outcome was mean blood glucose. Results: A total of 108 patients (with 3,021 blood glucose readings) were included in the final analysis. Seventy-six patients received hydrocortisone as intermittent boluses (70.3%), and 32 patients (29.7%) received continuous infusion. For the primary outcome, no statistically or clinically significant difference was found in the blood glucose estimated marginal mean: 8.58 mmol/L (95% confidence interval [CI]; 8.01–9.16) in the bolus group and 8.9 mmol/L (95% CI; 7.99–9.82) in the infusion group with a mean difference of 0.32 mmol/L (95% CI; −0.77 to 1.41). For secondary outcomes, no difference was found between the two groups in mortality, length of stay, reversal of shock, or hypoglycemic events. Conclusion: Intermittent boluses of hydrocortisone were not associated with a higher risk of hyperglycemia than continuous infusion in septic shock patients.

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