Paediatrics Publications

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Hematology (United Kingdom)





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Objectives: The objective of the current study was to investigate the relationship between changes in vital signs and intensive care unit (ICU) admission. Windsor Regional Hospital treats 15–20 new patients a year with acute leukemia. These patients are at increased risk of neutropenic fevers and admission to the ICU following induction chemotherapy. Methods: Retrospective review examined the correlation between acute leukemia patient vitals and ICU admission. The analysis included 37 patients: 7 ICU versus 30 controls. Changes were compared to baseline over 24 hours prior to ICU admission or 5 days after the initiation of induction chemotherapy in the following vital signs: heart rate (HR), mean arterial pressure (MAP), temperature (T), respiratory rate (RR), and fraction of inspired oxygen (FiO2) required to maintain a stable oxygen saturation. Results: RR and FiO2 demonstrated significant change over baseline leading up to ICU admission within the ICU group. T, HR and MAP did not demonstrate significant changes over time in either group. RR, FiO2 and HR were significantly higher in the ICU group at time zero compared with the control group. RR was recorded least frequently in the 24 hours leading up to ICU admission. Discussion: Changes in RR and FiO2 predicted clinical deterioration requiring ICU admission in acute leukemia patients. This is consistent with the predominant reason for ICU admission which was respiratory failure. Conclusion: We present preliminary evidence to support enhanced monitoring of RR and FiO2 in acute leukemia patients following induction chemotherapy with early intervention if identified.