Noninvasive mechanical ventilation for very old patients with limitations of care: Is the ICU the most appropriate setting?

Respiratory Ward and Respiratory Intensive Care Unit, S, Donato Hospital, ASL 8 Arezzo, Via Nenni 20, 52100 Arezzo, Italy. .
Critical care (London, England) (Impact Factor: 4.48). 06/2012; 16(3):429. DOI: 10.1186/cc11352
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Available from: Antonio M Esquinas
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    Full-text · Article · Aug 2012 · Critical care (London, England)
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    ABSTRACT: A leading role for non-invasive ventilation (NIV), as comfort treatment or palliative care, is actually recognized for very old patients suffering from ARF. NIV was frequently used in both ICU and respiratory ICU (RICUs) for very old patients and it is associated with a reduced rate of endotracheal intubations and mortality. This study aims to evaluate the effects of NIV, performed in a setting of half-open geriatric ward with family support, in a cohort of very old patients with ARF and DNI decision. A consecutive cohort of 20 very old patients with DNI decision was admitted in our 26-bed geriatric ward during a 6 months' period. DNI decision was obtained in emergency room with an intensive care physician supported by a psychologist. Pressure support ventilation was the first choice of NIV. NIV has been performed by three adequately trained geriatricians, with one of them experienced in ICU, and in close collaboration with intensive care physicians. Arterial blood gases, to assess the response to ventilation, were obtained after 1, 6 and 12 h. NIV settings were modified according to arterial blood gas analyses or respiratory fatigue, if needed. Therefore, 75 % of patients were discharged home and 12 out of 20 patients had home respiratory support. PaO2/FiO2 ratio and pH increased while PaCO2 decreased during the 12 h of NIV with statistical significance. At the admission, alive patients had PaCO2 significantly lower than dead patients. After 12 h, alive patients had a better pH than dead patients. Dead patients experienced more complication than survivors. Very old DNI patients with ARF could be treated with NIV in half-open geriatric ward with trained physicians and nurses. The presence of family members may improve patients' comfort and reduce anxiety level even at the end of life. Further studies are needed to address the effective role of NIV in very old patients with DNI decisions.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2014 · Aging - Clinical and Experimental Research
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    ABSTRACT: AimsWe prospectively enrolled 207 patients (121 were 75 or older and 86 younger than 75) who were admitted to three Respiratory Monitoring Units. The primary outcomes were intubation and mortality rates; the secondary outcomes were changes in arterial blood gases analysis, non-invasive ventilation (NIV) duration and length of hospital stay.ResultsHospital mortality was similar in the two groups, as were intubation rates. The proportion who died in the very old patient group was 19.8% (24/121) vs. 10.4% (9/86) in the younger group. Intubation rate was 10.7% (13/121) in the very old patient group and 11.6% (10/86) in the younger group. The presence of comorbidities, the severity of illness (SAPS II), the level of consciousness, NIV failure (intubation), absolute value of pH prior to NIV, as well as the changes in pH and paCO2 and PaO2/FiO2 after 2 h of NIV, were the variables associated with higher mortality. Very old patients had significantly higher NIV duration than younger patients (69.0 ± 47.0 vs. 57.0 ± 27.0 h) (p ≤ 0.03) and hospital stays (11.6 ± 3.8 vs. 8.4 ± 1.4) (p ≤ 0.02).Conclusions The use of NIV in very old patients was effective in many cases. Endotracheal intubation after NIV failure was not efficacious in either group.
    Full-text · Article · May 2014 · International Journal of Clinical Practice