PLoS One. 2020 Nov 23;15(11):e0242651. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0242651. eCollection 2020.
PURPOSE: The outcomes of patients requiring invasive mechanical ventilation for COVID-19 remain poorly defined. We sought to determine clinical characteristics and outcomes of patients with COVID-19 managed with invasive mechanical ventilation in an appropriately resourced US health care system.
METHODS: Outcomes of COVID-19 infected patients requiring mechanical ventilation treated within the Inova Health System between March 5, 2020 and April 26, 2020 were evaluated through an electronic medical record review.
RESULTS: 1023 COVID-19 positive patients were admitted to the Inova Health System during the study period. Of these, 164 (16.0%) were managed with invasive mechanical ventilation. All patients were followed to definitive disposition. 70/164 patients (42.7%) had died and 94/164 (57.3%) were still alive. Deceased patients were older (median age of 66 vs. 55, p <0.0001) and had a higher initial d-dimer (2.22 vs. 1.31, p = 0.005) and peak ferritin levels (2998 vs. 2077, p = 0.016) compared to survivors. 84.3% of patients over 70 years old died in the hospital. Conversely, 67.4% of patients age 70 or younger survived to hospital discharge. Younger age, non-Caucasian race and treatment at a tertiary care center were all associated with survivor status.
CONCLUSION: Mortality of patients with COVID-19 requiring invasive mechanical ventilation is high, with particularly daunting mortality seen in patients of advanced age, even in a well-resourced health care system. A substantial proportion of patients requiring invasive mechanical ventilation were not of advanced age, and this group had a reasonable chance for recovery.