Indian Journal of Critical Care Medicine

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2021 | November | Volume 25 | Issue 11

EDITORIAL

How Long can You Stay in Emergency Department (ED)?

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:2] [Pages No:1213 - 1214]

Keywords: EDLOS, Emergency room, IPLOS, Triage

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24028  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

EDITORIAL

Unraveling the Worth of a Clinical Pharmacist

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:2] [Pages No:1215 - 1216]

Keywords: Chronic kidney disease, Clinical pharmacist, Drug–drug interaction

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24031  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

EDITORIAL

iPad with iPad-based Apps: An Optimal Communications Tool in the Intensive Care Unit?

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:2] [Pages No:1217 - 1218]

Keywords: Augmentative and alternative communication, Communication tools, Critically ill, Intensive care unit, ipad, ipad apps

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24034  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

EDITORIAL

Nameet Jerath

Viral Bronchiolitis in Children: Less is More

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:2] [Pages No:1219 - 1220]

Keywords: Acute bronchiolitis, Children, Mechanical ventilation, PICU, Respiratory syncytial virus

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24035  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Original Article

Ankur Verma, Shakti Shishodia, Sanjay Jaiswal, Wasil R Sheikh, Meghna Haldar, Amit Vishen, Rinkey Ahuja, Abbas A Khatai, Palak Khanna

Increased Length of Stay of Critically Ill Patients in the Emergency Department Associated with Higher In-hospital Mortality

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:5] [Pages No:1221 - 1225]

Keywords: Emergency overcrowding, Mortality, Throughput

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24018  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

Objectives: Emergency department (ED) length of stay (LOS) is defined as the time a patient is registered to the time the patient is shifted to a hospital bed or discharged. Increasing demand for quality emergency care has resulted in increased wait times due to demand and supply mismatch. It is perceived that longer LOS in the ED of critical patients leads to poor outcomes. Our goal was to study the impact of LOS in the ED on the patients who required critical care admissions. Methods: This was a retrospective study conducted in the ED of a tertiary center. Data were collected using electronic health records (EHR) for patients admitted to the intensive care units (ICUs). Patient's LOS in ED was divided into 0–4, 4–8, 8–12, 12–24, and >24 hours. ED LOS was calculated from the registration time to the time patient was handed over in the ICU. Patients were divided into four categories (1–4) based on their criticality. LOS in ED, mortality, and total hospital LOS were analyzed in the study. Results: Three thousand four hundred and twenty-nine patients were enrolled in the study. Mean age was 62.69 years (95% CI 62.11–63.26). A total of 42.09% (95% CI 40.5–43.8) were Category 1 patients. Overall mortality rate was 52.46% (95% CI 50.79–54.13). LOS of 48.15% (95% CI 46.54–49.88) patients in the ED was between 0 and 4 hours, 19.90% (95% CI 18.62–21.29) between 4 and 8 hours, 8.21% (95% CI 7.35–9.19) between 8 and 12 hours, 15.50% (95% CI 14.34–16.77) between 12 and 24 hours, and 8.13% (95% CI 7.27–9.10) >24 hours. Mortality for LOS of 0–4 hours was 51.30% (95% CI 48.89–53.70), 54.03% (95% CI 50.28–57.73) for 4–8 hours, 48.94% (95% CI 43.16–54.75) for 8–12 hours, 51.50% (95% CI 47.26–55.72) for 12–24 hours, and 60.57% (95% CI 54.73–66.13) for >24 hours. Conclusion: We concluded that the longer the critically ill patients are boarded in the ED, the higher is the chance for mortality. Processes should be implemented to ease the throughput from the ED.

Original Article

Mina Aghili, Meera Neelathahalli Kasturirangan

Management of Drug–Drug Interactions among Critically Ill Patients with Chronic Kidney Disease: Impact of Clinical Pharmacist's Interventions

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:6] [Pages No:1226 - 1231]

Keywords: Chronic kidney disease, Clinical pharmacist's intervention, Critically ill patients, Drug–drug interaction

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-23919  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

Background and objectives: Drug–drug interactions (DDIs) can create a burden on prescribers to preserve patient safety. This study aimed to identify common DDIs in critically ill patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) and to evaluate clinical pharmacist's interventions in managing DDIs among these patients. Methods: A prospective observational study was conducted from October 2018 to March 2019. The clinical pharmacist performed a medication chart review; DDIs were identified by using Lexicomp® drug interaction. Based on the occurrence of DDIs, patients were divided into group A: patients with DDI (n = 76) and group B: patients without DDI (n = 15). Clinical pharmacist's interventions were classified according to Pharmaceutical Care Network Europe. The National Coordinating Council for Medication Error Reporting and Prevention was used to categorize the severity outcomes of DDIs and the degree of patient harm. Results: A total of 273 DDIs were identified. The majority of DDIs (63.7%) required close monitoring of the therapeutic outcome to ensure maintaining patient safety. DDIs that needed to be managed by considering therapy modification and avoiding drug combination were accounted for 17.2 and 12.8% of the most common detected interactions, respectively. Seventy-eight percent of DDIs induced no harm to patient. Clinical pharmacist provided different types of recommendations to manage detected interactions, which ranged from therapy outcome monitoring to stop DDIs. A great proportion of pharmacist's interventions (92%) were accepted by prescribers. Compared to patients with stage 3 and 4 CKD, patients with stage 5 had a significantly higher number of DDIs (stage 3 vs 5: p = 0.0019, stage 4 vs 5: p = 0.0456). The number of comorbidities (p = 0.0003) and (p <0.0001) medications were found to be significantly greater in group A. Conclusion: Clinical pharmacist performed important interventions in timely identifying, managing DDIs, and prevention of associated patient harms.

Original Article

Andrew J Dind

iPad-based Apps to Facilitate Communication in Critically Ill Patients with Impaired Ability to Communicate: A Preclinical Analysis

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:9] [Pages No:1232 - 1240]

Keywords: Augmentative and alternative communication, Communication, Culture, Information and communication technology, Intensive care

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24019  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

Background: Inability to communicate is very distressing for patients in the intensive care unit (ICU). Most communication exchanges in ICU are initiated by healthcare workers (HCWs). Touch screen apps may enable patients to initiate communication and improve their interactions. Objectives: This study aimed to evaluate the pertinent features of iPad-based apps designed for communication in ICU. Methods: Apple “App Store” and Google “Play Store” were searched for keywords “communication” and “intensive care.” Related app suggestions were screened. Two independent assessors evaluated iPad-based apps that were deemed useful. The assessors resolved the discrepancies by re-evaluating the apps and reaching a consensus. Results: Nine apps met the inclusion criteria. Of these six apps were free. There were seven apps specific to intensive care. Most apps had preloaded phrases for the patient to request to see someone (e.g., family), personal hygiene (e.g., bowel care), seek help with symptoms (e.g., pain), or a comfort item (e.g., blanket). CALD Assist, Patient Communicator, VidaTalk, and YoDoc were available in more than eight languages. VidaTalk and YoDoc allowed the user to write. Four apps were deemed not suitable for routine ICU use, while the remaining five had several attractive features. Conclusion: Several high-quality apps are available to assist with patient-initiated communication exchange in ICU. This study provides a guide for readers to choose the app most suited to their needs. In the opinion of the authors, YoDoc is the most suitable app for routine use in ICU. Among free apps, CommuniCare appears to be the most user-friendly.

Original Article

Shruti Jain, Akshaya Kumar Das, Vandana Talwar, Jugal Kishore, Heena , Usha Ganapathy

Social Stigma of COVID-19 Experienced by Frontline Healthcare Workers of Department of Anaesthesia and Critical Care of a Tertiary Healthcare Institution in Delhi

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:6] [Pages No:1241 - 1246]

Keywords: Discrimination, Healthcare workers, Negative attitude, Personalized stigma, SARS-CoV-2

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24008  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

Background: Social stigma is associated with Coronavirus Disease-2019 (COVID-19) particularly against people who have contracted the disease or have come in contact with it. There is paucity of studies regarding the prevalence of social stigma against healthcare workers (HCWs) in COVID-19 hospitals in India. The objective of this study was to measure social stigma faced by frontline HCWs of Department of Anaesthesia and Critical Care in a COVID-19 hospital and to assess the relationship between sociodemographic characteristics and social stigma. Patients and methods: A cross-sectional study using a questionnaire (sociodemographic characteristics along with modified Berger HIV Stigma Scale) was conducted from October 10, 2020 to October 30, 2020, in the Department of Anaesthesia and Critical Care. The survey was distributed among frontline HCWs using Google Forms as well as Bilingual Physical Form. Total stigma and subgroups of stigma scale were measured for different sociodemographic parameters and compared. Data were presented as mean ± standard deviation. p-value <0.05 was taken as significant. Results: Out of 120 frontline HCWs participated in the study, 68 (56.6%) reported severe level of COVID-19-related stigma. The mean score of COVID-19-related stigma was 41 + 7.69. Mean scores for subgroups of stigma scale, i.e., personalized stigma, disclosure concerns, negative self-image, and concerns with public attitude, were 15.60 + 4.01, 6.68 + 3.21, 5.46 + 3.22, and 13.25 + 2.44, respectively. In the univariate analysis, the overall COVID-19-related stigma scores were associated with age >30 years, male gender, lower designation (technicians and nursing orderly), lesser education, and married HCWs. In logistic regression model, only male gender was significantly associated with severity of COVID-19 stigma. Conclusion: This study concluded that more than half of frontline HCWs in the Department of Anaesthesia and Critical Care experienced severe social stigma during COVID-19 pandemic, with highest stigma in concerns with public attitude subgroup. Severity of stigma was associated with age, male gender, designation, education, and marital status of HCW. Highlights: Frontline HCWs of Department Anaesthesia and Critical Care experienced significant stigma related to COVID-19.

Original Article

Manoj Kumar Rathiswamy

Frequency and Impact of Preadmission Digestive Symptoms on Outcome in Severe COVID-19: A Prospective Observational Cohort Study

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:11] [Pages No:1247 - 1257]

Keywords: Gastrointestinal complications, Intensive care, Mortality prediction, Severe COVID-19

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24020  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

Background: Coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) commonly presents with respiratory symptoms. However, symptoms involving the digestive system may be present, significance of which is not well studied in the Indian scenario. Methods: This prospective observational cohort study included consecutive patients with severe COVID-19 admitted to intensive care unit of our tertiary care hospital from September 9, 2020, to March 14, 2021. We evaluated the frequency of preadmission digestive symptoms and compared the demographic, clinical, laboratory parameters, and organ failure at admission and during intensive care along with mortality between those with and without digestive symptoms. In the digestive group, we sought to find predictors of mortality. Results: Digestive symptoms were present in 76/234 (32.4%) with severe COVID-19 infection. In comparison to nondigestive group, digestive patients had higher need for noninvasive ventilation (p 0.028), invasive lines (68%, p 0.003), vasopressors (64%, p 0.01), blood product transfusion (21.1%, p <0.001), and heart failure (55.4%, p 0.041). Confounding factors of alcohol abuse, smoking, sedentary lifestyle as a causative agent for heart failure could not be ruled out. Proportional mortality rate is higher in the digestive group (65.8%, p = 0.015). Mortality is multifactorial with preadmission abdominal pathologies (HR 4.3) or central nervous system (CNS)-related comorbidities (HR 2.829), presentation with multiple digestive symptoms (HR 6.9), higher sequential organ failure assessment score (SOFA) score at admission (HR 1.258) and discharge (HR 1.162), and presence of acute kidney injury (AKI) Grade 3 (HR 2.95) as predictors of mortality. After adjusting for all confounders, need for vasopressor was observed to be associated with 11.58 times higher risk of mortality. Conclusion: Preadmission digestive symptoms may be associated with a turbulent illness with invasive interventions, heart failure, and greater proportional mortality in severe COVID-19. AKI Grade 3 is identified as a preventable risk factor predicting mortality. CTRI/2021/03/032325.

Original Article

Anuradha Sharma, Arghadip Samaddar, Anand Maurya, Vivek Hada, Himanshu Narula, Twishi Shrimali, Neeraj Gupta, Vijaya Lakshmi Nag

Analysis of Blood Culture Data Influences Future Epidemiology of Bloodstream Infections: A 5-year Retrospective Study at a Tertiary Care Hospital in India

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:5] [Pages No:1258 - 1262]

Keywords: Blood culture, Bloodstream infections, Candida parapsilosis, Fluconazole resistance, Pneumococci, Salmonellae

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-23922  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

Background: Blood cultures are the most significant samples received in a microbiology laboratory. Good quality control of pre-analytic, analytic, and post-analytic stages can have a significant impact on patient outcomes. Here, we present the improvements brought about by reviewing blood culture data with clinicians at a tertiary care institute in India. Methods: Four-year blood culture data (phase I—February 2014–February 2018) were shared with clinicians in the clinical grand round. Several take-home messages were discussed in a quiz format, and a number of holistic quality control measures were implemented at different levels. Based on observable changes in blood culture reports, another dataset was analyzed and compared in phase II (April 2018–April 2019). Results: In phase II, the blood culture contamination rate improved from 6 to 2% along with four times reduction in ICU isolates and three times increased isolation of salmonellae and pneumococci. The development of resistance in Klebsiella pneumoniae to carbapenems and piperacillin–tazobactam was reduced. Colistin resistance in ICU isolates hovered around 15%. Vaccine-preventable pneumococcal serotypes were predominant in the under-five age-group. Typhoidal salmonellae were more commonly isolated from adults with 50% showing sensitivity to pefloxacin and 97% to ampicillin, chloramphenicol, and cotrimoxazole. Candida parapsilosis was the leading non-albicans Candida (NAC). Fluconazole resistance was observed in 50% of NAC. Conclusion: Reviewing blood culture data with clinicians mutually helped us to improve the overall quality of blood culture reports. It had a major impact on epidemiological trends and thus, found to be superior to just sharing an antibiogram with the clinicians.

Original Article

Ramadevi Mariappan, Madhan Kumar, Nagarajan Ramakrishnan, Ashwin K Mani, Senthil Kumar, C Vignesh

Practice Patterns and Outcome of Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation Therapy for Severe Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome in Indian ICUs

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:6] [Pages No:1263 - 1268]

Keywords: Acute respiratory distress syndrome, Complications, Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, Indications, Outcomes, Rescue therapy

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-23928  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

Introduction: Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) is increasingly used in managing patients with severe acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). The aim of the study is to describe the practice of ECMO and evaluate the outcomes in patients with severe ARDS in Indian intensive care units (ICUs). Methods: Data of 39 patients with severe ARDS managed with ECMO in two tertiary centers between 2012 and 2018 were retrospectively studied. Results: The mean age of the patient was 44.6 ± 13.5 years and 51% were female. Primary ARDS due to viral pneumonia was the common indication for ECMO. Mean APACHE II and Murray scores were 32.3 ± 7.8 and 3.64 ± 0.21, respectively. Prone ventilation and/or inhaled nitric oxide were used in 69.3% of the patients prior to ECMO therapy. Among 39 patients, 38 patients were managed with venovenous ECMO and 1 patient was managed with venoarterial ECMO. Average ECMO duration was 9.4 ± 6.9 days. Among the 17 (43.5%) patients successfully weaned off ECMO, 15 (38.5%) survived to discharge home. The average ICU and hospital length of stay were 18.9 ± 15.5 and 20.6 ± 16.6 days, respectively. While, sepsis was the common complication noted in 19 (49%) patients, bleeding and thrombotic complications were also noted in six and two patients, respectively. Conclusion: In conclusion, ECMO support was used as rescue therapy in severe ARDS with a survival rate of 39%. Sepsis was the common complication of ECMO followed by bleeding and thrombosis.

Original Article

Abhijit Kumar, Amit Kohli, Nishtha Kachru, Poonam Bhadoria, Sonia Wadhawan

Fiber-optic Bronchoscope-guided vs Mini-surgical Technique of Percutaneous Dilatational Tracheostomy in Intensive Care Units

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:6] [Pages No:1269 - 1274]

Keywords: Arrhythmia, Bleeding, Fiber-optic bronchoscopy, Hypoxia, Intensive care unit, Percutaneous dilatational tracheostomy, Pneumothorax, Subcutaneous emphysema, Tracheostomy

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24021  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

Background: Percutaneous dilatational tracheostomy (PCDT) using fiber-optic bronchoscope (FOB) is a widely practiced technique, but its availability and cost remain a concern in nations with limited resources. Mini-surgical technique of PCDT incorporating minimal blunt dissection has shown improved results even without the use of FOB. The study is primarily intended to compare these two techniques and establish a safer cost-effective alternative to FOB-guided PCDTs. Patients and methods: This randomized comparative study [registered (CTRI/2018/04/013191)] was conducted on 120 mechanically ventilated patients. In 60 patients, mini-surgical PCDT (group-M) was performed with 2 cm longitudinal skin incision and blunt dissection till pretracheal fascia without FOB guidance using Portex-Ultraperc™ sets. In remaining 60 patients, PCDT was performed under FOB vision with similar skin incision (without blunt dissection) using Portex-Ultraperc™ sets (group-F). Two techniques were compared with regard to procedural time and percentage of complications occurred during or after the procedure. Results: Procedure time [group-M: 6.30 ± 1.28 minutes; group-F: 14.43 ± 1.84 minutes (p <0.001)] and mean blood loss [group-M: 5.33 ± 1.69 mL; group-F: 6.87 ± 3.11 mL (p = 0.001)] was significantly less in group-M. Higher incidence of desaturation [group-M: 16.7%; group-F: 35% (p = 0.022)] was noted in group-F, whereas arrhythmias [group-M: 21.7%; group-F: 6.7% (p = 0.018)] were higher in group-M. There was no statistical difference in incidence of pneumothorax and subcutaneous emphysema. There was no incidence of posterior tracheal wall perforation in any of the patients. Conclusion: Mini-surgical technique is a faster alternative of FOB-guided PCDT with comparable incidence of complications. It can safely be used in intensive care units (ICUs) where FOB is not available. Clinical trial registration number: CTRI/2018/05/014307 Name of registry: Clinical Trials Registry of India (CTRI), URL—http://ctri.nic.in

Original Article

Maryam Ameri, Seyedmohammad Mirhosseini, Mohammad Hasan Basirinezhad, Hossein Ebrahimi

Prevalence of Restless Legs Syndrome and Its Relationship with Fatigue in Critical Care Nurses

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:5] [Pages No:1275 - 1279]

Keywords: Critical care, Fatigue, Nurse, Restless legs syndrome, Willis-Ekbom syndrome

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24010  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

Background: The critical care unit is inherently stressful due to its complexity, leading to fatigue and consequences such as restless legs syndrome (RLS). This study aimed to investigate the prevalence of RLS and its relationship with fatigue in critical care nurses. Patients and methods: This cross-sectional study was performed with 200 nurses of critical care units of Shahroud hospitals in 2019 using the census sampling method. Data collection tools included the RLS questionnaire and the Multidimensional Fatigue Inventory. Data analysis was performed using descriptive and inferential statistics (multiple linear regression analysis). Results: The results showed that 72% of the subjects had moderate to high RLS, and their mean fatigue was 55.31 ± 10.53. By increasing one point in the score of RLS and 1 year of critical care nursing experience, the fatigue score increases by 0.3 and 0.71. Conclusions: Considering the relationship between fatigue and RLS in critical care nurses, supportive interventions seem necessary to reduce the effects of these two components.

Consensus Statement

Mradul K Daga, Akshaykumar A Chhallani, Apoorv Krishna, Bharat G Jagiasi, Himadri S Barthakur, Hrishikesh Jha, Pradeep Rangappa, Raghunath Aladakatti, Rajesh C Mishra, Rajesh M Shetty, Rohit Yadav, Sandeep Garg, Sivakumar M Nandakumar, Srinivas Samavedam, Vijay Hadda, Yash Javeri, Manish Munjal

Expert Consensus Statements on the Use of Corticosteroids in Non-severe COVID-19

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:6] [Pages No:1280 - 1285]

Keywords: Corticosteroids in moderate COVID-19, Delphi study, Non-severe COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-23923  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

Introduction: There is strong evidence for the use of corticosteroid in the management of severe coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19). However, there is still uncertainty about the timing of corticosteroids. We undertook a modified Delphi study to develop expert consensus statements on the early identification of a subset of patients from non-severe COVID-19 who may benefit from using corticosteroids. Methods: A modified Delphi was conducted with two anonymous surveys between April 30, 2021, and May 3, 2021. An expert panel of 35 experts was selected and invited to participate through e-mail. The consensus was defined as >70% votes in multiple-choice questions (MCQ) on Likert-scale type statements, while strong consensus as >90% votes in MCQ or >50% votes for “very important” on Likert-scale questions in the final round. Results: Twenty experts completed two rounds of the survey. There was strong consensus for the increased work of breathing (95%), a positive six-minute walk test (90%), thorax computed tomography severity score of >14/25 (85%), new-onset organ dysfunction (using clinical or biochemical criteria) (80%), and C-reactive protein >5 times the upper limit of normal (70%) as the criteria for patients’ selection. The experts recommended using oral or intravenous (IV) low-dose corticosteroids (the equivalent of 6 mg/day dexamethasone) for 5–10 days and monitoring of oxygen saturation, body temperature, clinical scoring system, blood sugar, and inflammatory markers for any “red-flag” signs. Conclusion: The experts recommended against indiscriminate use of corticosteroids in mild to moderate COVID-19 without the signs of clinical worsening. Oral or IV low-dose corticosteroids (the equivalent of 6 mg/day dexamethasone) for 5–10 days are recommended for patients with features of disease progression based on clinical, biochemical, or radiological criteria after 5 days from symptom onset under close monitoring.

BRIEF RESEARCH COMMUNICATION

Murugan Koushik, Ramachandran Meenakshisundaram, Narendra Nath Jena

Oxygen Administration under Surgical Face Mask in COVID-19 Patients: A Game Changer

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:2] [Pages No:1286 - 1287]

Keywords: Acute hypoxemic respiratory failure, COVID-19, COVID-19 patient, Oxygen saturation, Pulse oximeter

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24011  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

COVID-19 is a multifaceted infectious disease. The development of hypoxemic respiratory failure is not uncommon during the course of illness in some of them. The objectives of the present study were to assess the effect of the addition of a surgical face mask while delivering oxygen via nasal cannula in hypoxemic COVID-19 patients and highlight on the advantages and patient's comforts. We prospectively assessed 30 consecutive conscious and hypoxemic COVID-19 patients, requiring oxygen via nasal cannula. The mean PaO2 without and with surgical face mask were 52 (+9) and 83 (−12) mm Hg respectively in the cohort, and the elevation in oxygen saturation was statistically significant (p <0.001). The present results encourage the delivery of oxygen under the surgical face mask in symptomatic COVID-19 patients, as it improves oxygen saturation and prevents aerosol dispersion with no change in PaCO2. The other advantages of this method are a reduction in the total requirement of oxygen per patient, better utilization of scarce resources, and lessening of the expenses incurred for oxygen.

VIEWPOINT

Pradeep Rangappa

Cytokine Storm and Immunomodulation in COVID-19

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:4] [Pages No:1288 - 1291]

Keywords: COVID-19, Cytokine release syndrome, Cytokine storm, Mycobacterium w, Steroids, Tocilizumab

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24029  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

COVID-19 has become a major pandemic in recent times. The exact pathophysiology and understanding of cytokine storm and immunomodulation are evolving. Various cytokines have been implicated in the pathophysiology of COVID-19. Immunosuppressant immunomodulators like steroids, canakinumab, anakinra, tocilizumab, sarilumab, baricitinib, ruxolitinib, bevacizumab, and itolizumab have been tried. Immunostimulant immunomodulators like interferons (IFNs) and Mycobacterium w (Mw) have also been repurposed. Considering the role of multiple cytokines implicated in COVID-19, molecules working on the majority of the targets, may hold a promising future prospect.

SYSTEMATIC REVIEW

Soumya Sarkar, Puneet Khanna

Convalescent Plasma—A Light at the End of the Tunnel: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:9] [Pages No:1292 - 1300]

Keywords: Convalescent plasma, Coronavirus disease 2019, Meta-analysis, Randomized controlled trial, SARS-CoV-2

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24023  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

In the absence of a definitive therapy during this ongoing unprecedented crisis, coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, convalescent plasma transfusion (CPT) has shown some promising results. This review summarizes the existing evidence of the efficacy of CPT in COVID-19 patients based upon scientific publications to date. We have included only the randomized controlled trials (RCTs) through an extensive screening of electronic databases up to July 31, 2021. In 19 RCTs, with a total of 16,476 COVID-19 patients we found low-quality evidence of significant reduction in mortality (odds ratio (OR) = 0.80; 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.66–0.96, I2 = 40%), better clinical outcome when applied <7 days (OR = 2.13, 95% CI 1.28–3.53, I2 = 0%), and improved viral clearance (OR = 2.6, 95% CI: 1.3–5.45, I2 = 74%). Meta-regression analysis found that as a covariate, intubation on admission (p = 0.007) had a significant impact. However, there was any significant reduction neither in duration for clinical improvement (MD = −0.79, 95% CI: −2.76–1.18, I2 = 98%), nor in total period of hospital stay (MD = 0.02, 95% CI: −0.75–0.78, I2 = 81%). Early application of CPT is still relevant in reducing morbidity and mortality in critically ill patients and is too early to write it off as a potential therapeutic modality for COVID-19 patients.

Pediatric Critical Care

Lalit Takia, Subhabrata Sarkar, Isheeta Jangra, Ishani Bora, Radha Kanta Ratho, Muralidharan Jayashree

Clinico-virological Profile, Intensive Care Needs, and Outcome of Infants with Acute Viral Bronchiolitis: A Prospective Observational Study

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:7] [Pages No:1301 - 1307]

Keywords: Acute bronchiolitis, Bronchiolitis, Intensive care, Mechanical ventilation, Respiratory syncytial virus

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24016  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

Objectives: The objective of the study was to describe the clinico-virological profile, treatment details, intensive care needs, and outcome of infants with acute viral bronchiolitis (AVB). Methodology: In this prospective observational study, 173 infants with AVB admitted to the pediatric emergency room and pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) of a tertiary care teaching hospital in North India during November 2019 to February 2020 were enrolled. The data collection included clinical features, viruses detected [respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), rhinovirus, influenza A virus, parainfluenza virus (PIV) 2 and 3, and human metapneumovirus (hMPV)], complications, intensive care needs, treatment, and outcomes. Multivariate analysis was performed to determine independent predictors for PICU admission. Results: Most common symptoms were rapid breathing (98.8%), cough (98.3%), and fever (74%). On examination, tachypnea (98.8%), chest retractions (93.6%), respiratory failure (84.4%), wheezing (49.7%), and crepitations (23.1%) were observed. RSV and rhinovirus were the predominant isolates. Complications were noted in 25% of cases as encephalopathy (17.3%), transaminitis (14.3%), shock (13.9%), acute kidney injury (AKI) (7.5%), myocarditis (6.4%), multiple organ dysfunction syndrome (MODS) (5.8%), and acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) (4.6%). More than one-third of cases required PICU admission. The treatment details included nasal cannula oxygen (11%), continuous positive airway pressure (51.4%), high-flow nasal cannula (14.5%), mechanical ventilation (23.1%), nebulization (74%), antibiotics (35.9%), and vasoactive drugs (13.9%). The mortality was 8.1%. Underlying comorbidity, chest retractions, respiratory failure at admission, presence of shock, and need for mechanical ventilation were independent predictors of PICU admission. Isolation of virus or coinfection was not associated with disease severity, intensive care needs, and outcomes. Conclusion: Among infants with AVB, RSV and rhinovirus were predominant. One-third infants with AVB needed PICU admission. The presence of comorbidity, chest retractions, respiratory failure, shock, and need for mechanical ventilation independently predicted PICU admission.

Pediatric Critical Care

Chandrakant Prasad, Ashish Bindra, Parul Singh, Gyaninder P Singh, Pankaj K Singh, Purva Mathur

Healthcare-associated Infections in Pediatric Patients in Neurotrauma Intensive Care Unit: A Retrospective Analysis

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:6] [Pages No:1308 - 1313]

Keywords: Healthcare-associated infection, Pediatric, Trauma, Traumatic brain injury

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24012  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

Background: Healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) can impact the outcome following traumatic brain injury (TBI) in children. We undertook a retrospective observational study to see the incidence, risk factors, and microbiological profile for HAIs in pediatric TBI. We also studied the impact of baseline patient characteristics, HAIs on patient outcome, and antibiotic resistance of different types of bacteria. Materials and methods: Data on pediatric TBI patients of age up to 12 years were collected via a computerized patient record system (CPRS) from January 2012 to December 2018. Descriptive Chi-square test and Wilcoxon signed rank test were used to characterize baseline parameters. General linear regression models were run to find an unadjusted and adjusted odds ratio (OR). Results: HAIs were found in 144 (34%) out of 423 patients. The most commonly seen infections were of the respiratory tract in 73 (17.26%) subjects. The most predominant microorganism isolated was Acinetobacter baumannii in 188 (41%) samples. A. baumannii was sensitive to colistin in 91 (48.4%) patients. Male gender (OR 0.630; p-value 0.035), fall from height (OR 0.374; p-value 0.008), and higher injury severity scale (ISS) (OR 1.040; p-value 0.002) were independent risk factors for development of HAIs. Severe TBI, higher ISS and Marshall grade, and HAIs were significantly associated with poor patient outcome. Conclusion: Severe TBI poses a significant risk of HAIs. The most common site was the respiratory tract, predominately infected with A. baumannii. HAIs in pediatric TBI patients resulted in poor patient outcome.

CASE SERIES

Parshika Panwar, Bhavna Gupta, Shiv C Navriya

Mucormycosis in COVID Diabetic Patients: A Horrifying Triad!

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:4] [Pages No:1314 - 1317]

Keywords: COVID, Diabetes mellitus, Hyperglycemia, Mucormycosis, Steroid.

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24025  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

Infectious diseases with the coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) can be linked to various microbial and fungal coinfections. Mucormycosis is an invasive opportunistic infection that enters as inhalation of fungal spores through the nose or paranasal sinuses in diabetic and immunocompromised patients. We present our experience of managing seven cases of recent COVID-19 infection with uncontrolled diabetes who developed rhino-orbital mucormycosis. All patients were diagnosed by clinical examination and imaging and managed by emergency surgical debridement and liposomal amphotericin-B. A lethal triad of impaired immunity due to COVID-19 infection, state of hyperglycemia, increased use of steroids, or rampant broad-spectrum antimicrobials works as fertile soil and may assist in the growth or alleviation of a fungal infection. Healthcare professionals must be aware of the potential of secondary invasive fungal infections in diabetic patients with moderate to severe category of COVID-19 infectious disease, especially on steroid therapy.

CASE REPORT

Rahul R Tambe, Anupa Hinduja, Suchithra Sunil, Ami Varaiya, Amol Joshi

Cutaneous Mucormycosis in a Patient of Severe COVID-19 Pneumonia: A Rarer than Rare Case Report

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:2] [Pages No:1318 - 1319]

Keywords: COVID-19 and mucormycosis, COVID-19-associated mucormycosis, Cutaneous mucormycosis, Secondary invasive fungal infection

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24026  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

Abstract

Coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19)-associated mucormycosis is on the rise in the Indian subcontinent. We report a unique case of cutaneous mucormycosis in a case of newly diagnosed young diabetic patient with severe COVID-19 pneumonia with post-COVID lung fibrosis. Neither did he have any preceding trauma or wound, nor was there any evidence of any secondary dissemination. Cutaneous mucormycosis without evidence of either is unheard off. Possible risk factors in this case were multiple bacterial secondary infections with the use of higher antibiotics, use of voriconazole for possible aspergillosis, and steroid use.

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

Swetalina Pradhan, Neeraj Kumar

Severe COVID-19 along with Cytokine Storm in Pemphigus Vulgaris Managed Successfully with Dexamethasone Pulse Therapy

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:2] [Pages No:1320 - 1321]

Keywords: COVID-19, Dexamethasone, Emergency department, Pemphigus, Pulse steroids

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24015  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

Anjan Trikha, Vineeta Venkateswaran

Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation in COVID-19 Patients: More Hype than Substance?

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:2] [Pages No:1322 - 1323]

Keywords: Cost, COVID-19, COVID-19 acute respiratory distress syndrome, Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, Intensive care unit, Pandemic, Survival to discharge

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24005  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

Abhyuday Kumar, Prabhat K Singh

Acute Exacerbation of Cough as a Precipitating Cause of Hypoxia in COVID-19 Patients

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:2] [Pages No:1324 - 1325]

Keywords: Cough, COVID-19, Hypoxemia

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24006  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

Varun Manjunath, Swaleha Nadaf, Rahul T Chakor

Delayed Post-hypoxic Leukoencephalopathy with Neuroradiological Recovery

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:3] [Pages No:1326 - 1328]

Keywords: Arylsulfatase, Delayed post-hypoxic encephalopathy, Demyelination, Hypoxia, Metabolic, Toxic

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24014  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

Stress Hyperglycemia Ratio may Portend Poor Outcomes in COVID-19

[Year:2021] [Month:November] [Volume:25] [Number:11] [Pages:1] [Pages No:1329 - 1329]

Keywords: Admission blood glucose, COVID-19, Diabetes mellitus, Poor outcomes, Relative hyperglycemia, Stress hyperglycemia ratio

   DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10071-24007  |  Open Access |  How to cite  | 

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