eISSN: 1731-2531
ISSN: 1642-5758
Anaesthesiology Intensive Therapy
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5/2019
vol. 51
 
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abstract:
Original paper

End-of-life management in intensive care units: a multicentre observational prospective cohort study

Marina Z. Alliprandini
1
,
Andressa J. Ferrandin
1
,
Adriana Fernandes
2
,
Mariana C. Belim
1
,
Mariana M. Jorge
1
,
Bruno H.B. Colombo
1
,
Jordana M. Yaguchi
1
,
Thais T. Chung
3
,
Amaury C. Jorge
3
,
Pericles A.D. Duarte
1, 4

1.
Hospital Universitario do Oeste do Parana, Cascavel, Parana, Brazil
2.
Hospital Sao Lucas – FAG, Cascavel, Parana, Brazil
3.
General ICU, Hospital Universitario do Oeste do Parana, Cascavel, Parana, Brazil
4.
Hospital do Cancer/UOPECCAN, Cascavel, Parana, Brazil
Anaesthesiol Intensive Ther 2019; 51, 5: 348–356
Online publish date: 2019/12/27
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Backgrounds
The study was conducted to evaluate intensive care unit (ICU) patients that ultimately died but could have met criteria for end-of-life management/palliative care (ELM-PC), and to analyse the application of components of palliative care, either “unperformed procedures” or elements of “futile/unnecessary treatment”.

Methods
An observational prospective cohort in five ICUs in Southern Brazil. Adult patients who died were evaluated, searching for criteria for ELM-PC. The correct application of nine preselected items by the ICU team was studied.

Results
Among 253 admissions, 52 patients died; among these, 38.5% met criteria for ELM-PC. Among ELM-PC candidates (n = 20), the ELM-PC was started later (after day 3) in 60%, and only three patients received adequate palliative care. “Analgesia” and “daily family interviews” were the most correctly applied ELM-PC elements. “Terminal extubation/weaning” was not performed in any of the patients. A reduction in the lifespan from the onset of ELM-PC to death was observed in patients who underwent “correct” interventions – 66.6% died on the first day of ELM-PC.

Conclusions
In a patient cohort from a low-medium-income country, one-third of patients who died in the ICU had criteria (indications) for ELM-PC; however, the palliative care was adequately performed for only 15% of patients, with great heterogeneity and delays regarding its initiation.

keywords:

palliative care, intensive care unit, death, patient comfort

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