Objective: To analyze the epidemiology and factors influencing mortality of ICU-acquired bacteremia. Design: Prospective clinical study. Setting: A medical-surgical ICU in an university hospital. Patients: We recorded variables from 111 consecutive ICU-acquired episodes for a 3-year period. Results: The attack rate was 1.9 episodes per 100 patientdays. The commonest isolates were coagulase-negative staphylococci, Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Escherichia coli. Intravascular catheters were the most frequent source of infection. Overall mortality was 31.5%, and 65.7% of all deaths were directly attributable to infection. Bacteremia from intra-abdominal, lower respiratory tract or unknown origin were associated with a poor prognosis. A logistic regression analysis defined intraabdominal origin (p=0.01, OR=15.7) and presence of shock (p=0.04, OR=3.3) as independently influencing the risk of death. No significant differences were found for the remaining variables studied. Conclusions: Epidemiology and etiology of ICU-acquired bacteremia does not differ seriously in respect to nosocomial bacteremia among unselected populations, although it is associated with a greater incidence and overall mortality. Presence of shock is the most important modificable variable affecting the outcome. © 1994 Springer-Verlag.
- Critically ill patients