Reduced mortality and shorten ICU stay in SARS-COV-2 pneumonia: a low PEEP strategy [article]

Samuele Ceruti, Marco Roncador, Olivier Gie, Giovanni Bona, Martina Iattoni, Maira Biggiogero, Pier Andrea Maida, Christian Garzoni, Romano Mauri, COVID-19 Clinical Management Team
2020 medRxiv   pre-print
Intensive Care Unit (ICU) management of COVID-19 patients with severe hypoxemia is associated with high mortality. We implemented a "care map", as a standardized multidisciplinary approach to improve patients monitoring using: uniform patient selection for ICU admission, a low-PEEP strategy and a pharmacologic strategic thromboembolism management. Methods A standardized protocol for managing COVID-19 patients and ICU admissions was implemented through accurate Early Warning Score (EWS)
more » ... g and thromboembolism prophylaxis at hospital admission. Dyspnea, mental confusion or SpO2 less than 85% were criteria for ICU admission. Ventilation approach employed low PEEP values (about 10 cmH2O in presence of lung compliance > 40 mL/cmH2O) and FiO2 as needed. In presence of lower lung compliance (< 40 mL/cmH2O) PEEP value was increased to about 14 cmH2O. Results From March 16th to April 12nd 2020, 41 COVID-19 patients were admitted to our ICU from a total of 310 patients. 83% (34) of them needed mechanical ventilation. The ventilation approach chosen employed low PEEP value based on BMI (PEEP 11+/- 3.8 (10-12) cmH2O if BMI < 30 Kg/m2; PEEP 15+/- 3.26 (12-18) cmH2O if BMI >30 Kg/m2). To date, ten patients (24%) died, four (9.7%) received mechanical ventilation, two were transferred to another hospital and 25 (60.9%) were discharged from ICU after a median of nine days. Discussion A multimodal approach for COVID-19 patients is mandatory. The knowledge of this multi-organ disease is growing rapidly, requiring improvements in the standard of care. Our approach implements an accurate pre-ICU monitoring and strict selection for ICU admission, and allows to reduce mechanical ventilation, ICU stay and mortality. Funding No funding has been required.
doi:10.1101/2020.05.03.20089318 fatcat:lr7ghynnqrdgrayxbrapvjsima