An Evaluation of the Use of Aggressive Fluid Resuscitation in the Early Treatment of Sepsis Patients

Link to article at PubMed

Cureus. 2021 Feb 23;13(2):e13518. doi: 10.7759/cureus.13518.


Introduction Fluid resuscitation is a critical aspect of the sepsis protocol with the usual initial dose being 30 mL per kilogram. Although this dose is well accepted in patients with normal cardiac function, there is some significant variation in clinical practice concerning the optimal fluid resuscitation in septic patients with underlying congestive heart failure (CHF). Many different approaches have been tried to best treat these patients by using lesser volumes of fluid. The purpose of this retrospective study is to attempt to better define optimal fluid resuscitation in congestive heart failure patients and whether standard fluid resuscitation exacerbates CHF in these cases. Methods This was a retrospective study involving patients admitted to the Emergency Department (ED) during the time period of September of 2016 through March of 2019 with a primary diagnosis of sepsis and pre-existing CHF. Data collected from the data warehouse and patient charts included demographics, total amount of fluid received in the ED and outcome data. Evidence of fluid overload (chest X-ray [CXR] evidence, rising B-type natriuretic peptide [BNP], or use of diuretics), was evaluated with respect to in-hospital mortality, white blood cell (WBC) count and comorbidities (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease [COPD], hypertension and coronary artery disease). Results There were 422 patients included in the cohort. Of the 422, 113 (26.8%) patients showed evidence of fluid overload on CXR during hospital stay and received diuretics and therefore considered in the CHF exacerbation group. The patients that experienced CHF exacerbation were significantly older (mean ± SD, 70.9 ± 11.8 years versus 67.4 ± 15.1 years, p=0.014). Patients with exacerbation also received more fluid (median and interquartile range, 3.0, 2:5.5 L versus 2.0, 1:4.3 L, p=0.017). The receiver operating characteristic curve analysis for fluid to predict exacerbation resulted in an area under the curve of 0.59 with a 95% confidence interval (CI) of 0.52 to 0.65, p=0.012. The Youden Index was used to determine an optimal cutoff value of 2.6 L. The percentage of patients in the exacerbation group above the threshold was significantly higher (57.3%) than those without exacerbation (43.3%), p=0.019. Following multivariate analysis, age greater than 60 (odds ratio [OR]: 2.5; CI: 1.4-4.6, p=0.003) and fluid cutoff of 2.6 L (OR: 1.9; CI: 1.2-3.1, p=0.007) were both found to be independent predictors of CHF exacerbation. There was no significant difference in mortality based on the total fluid received in the ED. Conclusion The findings of this study showed that septic patients with pre-existing CHF who received more than 2.6 L of fluid in the ED were 90% more likely to develop symptoms of CHF exacerbation with no evidence of lowering mortality compared to the group that received less than 2.6 L. Our data supports the practice of limiting total fluid resuscitation in CHF to 2.6 L and reconfirms the idea that fluid resuscitation for patients with CHF needs to be individualized.

PMID:33786225 | PMC:PMC7994009 | DOI:10.7759/cureus.13518

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