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Diarrhoea in the critically ill is common, associated with poor outcome, and rarely due to Clostridium difficile

Tirlapur, N; Puthucheary, ZA; Cooper, JA; Sanders, J; Coen, PG; Moonesinghe, SR; Wilson, AP; ... Montgomery, HE; + view all (2016) Diarrhoea in the critically ill is common, associated with poor outcome, and rarely due to Clostridium difficile. Scientific Reports , 6 , Article 24691. 10.1038/srep24691. Green open access

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Abstract

Diarrhoea is common in Intensive Care Unit (ICU) patients, with a reported prevalence of 15-38%. Many factors may cause diarrhoea, including Clostridium difficile, drugs (e.g. laxatives, antibiotics) and enteral feeds. Diarrhoea impacts on patient dignity, increases nursing workload and healthcare costs, and exacerbates morbidity through dermal injury, impaired enteral uptake and subsequent fluid imbalance. We analysed a cohort of 9331 consecutive patients admitted to a mixed general intensive care unit to establish the prevalence of diarrhoea in intensive care unit patients, and its relationship with infective aetiology and clinical outcomes. We provide evidence that diarrhoea is common (12.9% (1207/9331) prevalence) in critically ill patients, independently associated with increased intensive care unit length of stay (mean (standard error) 14.8 (0.26) vs 3.2 (0.09) days, p < 0.001) and mortality (22.0% (265/1207) vs 8.7% (705/8124), p < 0.001; adjusted hazard ratio 1.99 (95% CI 1.70-2.32), p < 0.001) compared to patients without diarrhoea even after adjusting for potential confounding factors, and infrequently caused by infective aetiology (112/1207 (9.2%)) such as Clostridium difficile (97/1048 (9.3%) tested) or virological causes (9/172 (5.7%) tested). Our findings suggest non-infective causes of diarrhoea in ICU predominate and pathophysiology of diarrhoea in critically ill patients warrants further investigation.

Type: Article
Title: Diarrhoea in the critically ill is common, associated with poor outcome, and rarely due to Clostridium difficile
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1038/srep24691
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/srep24691
Language: English
Additional information: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Infection and Immunity
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Medicine
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Medicine > Experimental and Translational Medicine
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Surgery and Interventional Sci
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences > Div of Surgery and Interventional Sci > Department of Targeted Intervention
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Cardiovascular Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health > Infection, Immunity and Inflammation Dept
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1486090
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