End of life decisions in immunocompromised patients with acute respiratory failure

for the Efraim investigators and the Nine-I study group

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: To identify patient, disease and organizational factors associated with decisions to forgo life-sustaining therapies (DFLSTs) in critically ill immunocompromised patients admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU) for acute respiratory failure. Material and methods: We performed a secondary analysis of the international EFRAIM prospective study, which enrolled 1611 immunocompromised patients with acute respiratory failure admitted to 68 ICUs in 16 countries between October 2015 and June 2016. Multivariate logistic analysis was performed to identify independent predictors of DFLSTs. Results: The main causes of immunosuppression were hematological malignancies (50%) and solid tumor (38%). Patients had a median age of 63 yo (54–71). A pulmonologist was involved in the patient management in 38% of cases. DFLSTs had been implemented in 28% of the patients. The following variables were independently associated with DFLSTs: 1) patient-related: older age (OR 1.02 per one year increase, 95% confidence interval(CI) 1.01–1.03,P < 0.001), poor performance status (OR 2.79, 95% CI 1.98–3.93, P < 0.001); 2) disease-related: shock (OR 2.00, 95% CI 1.45–2.75, P < 0.001), liver failure (OR 1.59, 95% CI 1.14–2.21, P = 0.006), invasive mechanical ventilation (OR 1.79, 95% CI 1.31–2.46, P < 0.001); 3) organizational: having a pulmonologist involved in patient management (OR 1.85, 95% CI 1.36–2.52, P < 0.001), and the presence of a critical care outreach services (OR 1.63, 95% CI 1.11–2.38, P = 0.012). Conclusions: A DFLST is made in one in four immunocompromised patient admitted to the ICU for acute respiratory failure. Involving a pulmonologist in patient's management is associated with less non beneficial care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number154152
JournalJournal of Critical Care
StatePublished - Dec 2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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