ABSTRACT: The hospitalization of the patient during the critical myelosuppressive period after chemotherapy is often complicated by infections caused by nosocomial pathogens, what is associated with a high antibiotics consumption and with prolongation of the period of hospitalization. These findings have led many centres to change their policy from "in-hospital" to "out-hospital care". In this retrospective study we tried, on the basis of our experiences, to identify the feasibility and safety of this approach.
We studied 56 patients with the acute myeloid leukemia treated in our clinic with the consolidation chemotherapy. We compared two groups of patients. In the first group, the patients were discharged upon completion of chemotherapy, consequently followed up as outpatients. Patients in the second group were observed in hospital during the entire nadir. Following 41 courses, patients were discharged and instructed to return immediately if fever or any other change of their clinical status occurred.
In 24 cases after chemotherapy, the patients returned to the hospital after a discharge (in 23 cases because of fever), in 17 cases of nadir periods the hospitalisation was not necessary at all. Seven patients were readmitted in septic shock, but rapidly recovered. Two other patients died, one due to an irreversible shock within 12 hours of readmission and one due to bacterial meningitis within 48 hours after readmission. In 10 cases of rehospitalization, patients responded to the first line of antibiotics. In the second group of the patients, only 2 courses of consolidation from a total of 15 were not complicated. In contrast to the first group, we detected only poor effectiveness of broad-spectrum antibiotics in the group of inpatients.
For AML patients in a good clinical status without any complicating medical conditions, the early discharge is feasible, safe and cost saving option (Tab. 2, Fig. 2, Ref. 7).
Bratislavske lekarske listy 01/2012; 113(5):298-300. · 0.40 Impact Factor