Cureus. 2020 Aug 16;12(8):e9788. doi: 10.7759/cureus.9788.
Introduction Opioid overdose is increasingly becoming common and so is the need for invasive mechanical ventilation (IMV) for opioid overdose admissions in hospitalized patients. Respiratory failure requiring invasive mechanical ventilation is the most common reason for the admission of opioid-associated overdose patients. The aim of our study was to assess the demographic and clinical characteristics associated with the increased need for IMV in hospitalized opioid overdose patients. Methods We analyzed all adult admissions (18 years and above) using the National Inpatient Sample (NIS) database for five years from January 1, 2010-December 31, 2014 to identify opioid overdose patients requiring invasive mechanical ventilation. We compared the demographic and clinical characteristics of opioid overdose patients requiring and not requiring mechanical ventilator support and performed univariate and multivariate analyses to determine the odds ratio (OR) of association. Results A total of 2,528,751 opioid overdose patients were identified among which 6.4% required IMV during hospitalization. The prevalence of opioid overdose and the need for IMV increased by 31% and 38%, respectively, over the study period. Multivariate logistic regression (OR (95% CI), p<0.001) determined the following to be associated with increased odds of mechanical ventilator use: (OR 1.12 (1.06-1.19)) among patients aged 25-39 years vs (1.36 (1.28-1.44)) for the age group 40-64 years when compared to 18-24 years; hospital locations in the south US region (OR 1.62 (1.49-1.75)) when compared to the northeast US region; the presence of aspiration pneumonia (OR 14.30 (13.63-15.0)), rhabdomyolysis (3.22 (3.04-3.42)), septic shock (9.15 (8.41-9.97)), and anoxic brain injury (15.5 (13.70-17.50)). Other factors associated with decreased odds of IMV include hepatitis C virus infection (OR 0.75 (0.72-0.79)) and black race (OR 0.68 (0.63-0.74)]. Opioid overdose patients requiring IMV had a higher length of stay by 8.9 ± 0.1 days, higher hospitalization cost by US$ 28,117.81 ± 373.53, and higher in-hospital mortality rate (13.4% vs 0.3%). Conclusion The prevalence of opioid overdose and the need for IMV increased over the five-year study period, reflecting an increase in the relatively high in-hospital mortality of opioid overdose patients on IMV. Patient's age, geographic location, race, and several comorbidities affect the need for invasive mechanical ventilation in hospitalized opioid overdose patients. These findings emphasize the need for a better understanding of these risk factors in creating a strategic approach for hospital care of opioid overdose patients.