07 Oct 06

Albumin administration improves organ function in critically ill hypoalbuminemic patients

Posted in Albumin, Critical Care at 9:51 by Laci

By MJ Dubois, C Orellana-Jimenez,C Melot, D De Backer,J Berre, M Leeman et al

Critical Care Medicine 2006;34(10):2536-2540

To test the hypothesis that administration of albumin to correct hypoalbuminemia might have beneficial effects on organ function in a mixed population of critically ill patients.

Design
Prospective, controlled, randomized study.

Setting
Thirty-one-bed, mixed medicosurgical department of intensive care.

Patients
All adult patients with a serum albumin concentration <=30 g/L were assessed for eligibility. Principal exclusion criteria were expected length of stay <72 hrs, life expectancy <3 months or a do-not-resuscitate order, albumin administration in the preceding 24 hrs, or evidence of fluid overload. Interventions
The 100 patients were randomized to receive 300 mL of 20% albumin solution on the first day, then 200 mL/day provided their serum albumin concentration was <31 g/dL (albumin group), or to receive no albumin (control group). Measurements and Main Results
The primary outcome was the effect of albumin administration on organ function as assessed by a delta Sequential Organ Failure Assessment score from day 1 to day 7 (or the day of intensive care discharge or death, whichever came first). The two groups of 50 patients were comparable at baseline for age, gender, albumin concentration, and Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation II score. Albumin concentration did not change over time in the control group but increased consistently in the albumin group (p < .001). Organ function improved more in the albumin than in the control group (p = .026), mainly due to a difference in respiratory, cardiovascular, and central nervous system components of the Sequential Organ Failure Assessment score. Diuretic use was identical in both groups, but mean fluid gain was almost three times higher in the control group (1679 +/- 1156 vs. 658 +/- 1101 mL, p = .04). Median daily calorie intake was higher in the albumin than in the control group (1122 [935-1158] vs. 760 [571-1077] kcal, p = .05). Conclusions
Albumin administration may improve organ function in hypoalbuminemic critically ill patients. It results in a less positive fluid balance and a better tolerance to enteral feeding.

11 Jan 06

Is albumin administration associated with increased mortality?

Posted in Albumin, Critical Care at 14:56 by Laci

By Jean-Louis Vincent , Yasser Sakr , Konrad Reinhart , Charles L Sprung , Herwig Gerlach and V Marco Ranieri for the ‘Sepsis Occurrence in Acutely Ill Patients’ investigators

Critical Care 2005, 9:R745-R754 http://ccforum.com/content/9/6/R745

Introduction
Albumin administration in the critically ill has been the subject of some controversy. We investigated the use of albumin solutions in European intensive care units (ICUs) and its relationship to outcome.

Methods
In a cohort, multicenter, observational study, all patients admitted to one of the participating ICUs between 1 May and 15 May 2002 were followed up until death, hospital discharge, or for 60 days. Patients were classified according to whether or not they received albumin at any time during their ICU stay.

Results
Of 3,147 admitted patients, 354 (11.2%) received albumin and 2,793 (88.8%) did not. Patients who received albumin were more likely to have cancer or liver cirrhosis, to be surgical admissions, and to have sepsis. They had a longer length of ICU stay and a higher mortality rate, but were also more severely ill, as manifested by higher simplified acute physiology score (SAPS) II and sequential organ failure assessment (SOFA) scores than the other patients. A Cox proportional hazard model indicated that albumin administration was significantly associated with decreased 30-day survival. Moreover, in 339 pairs matched according to a propensity score, ICU and hospital mortality rates were higher in the patients who had received albumin than in those who had not (34.8 versus 20.9% and 41.3 versus 27.7%, respectively, both p < 0.001). Conclusion
Albumin administration was associated with decreased survival in this population of acutely ill patients. Further prospective randomized controlled trials are needed to examine the effects of albumin administration in sub-groups of acutely ill patients.

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