Document Detail

Use of serum bicarbonate measurement in place of arterial base deficit in the surgical intensive care unit.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  16103283     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
HYPOTHESIS: Serum bicarbonate (HCO(3)) measurement may accurately and reliably be substituted for the arterial base deficit (BD) assay in the surgical intensive care unit (ICU). DESIGN: Retrospective criterion standard analysis. SETTING: Surgical ICU in a tertiary care facility. PATIENTS: Consecutive sample of non-trauma-related surgical ICU admissions from January 1996 to January 2004 with simultaneously obtained serum HCO(3) and arterial BD levels. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Correlation between HCO(3) and BD at admission and during the ICU stay; predictive value of serum HCO(3) for significant metabolic acidosis and ICU mortality. RESULTS: The study included 2291 patients with 26 063 sets of paired laboratory data. The mean +/- SD age was 52 +/- 16 years and mean ICU stay was 5.8 +/- 9.8 days. There were 174 ICU deaths (8%). Serum HCO(3) levels showed significant correlation with arterial BD levels both at admission (r = 0.85, R(2) = 0.72, P<.001) and throughout the ICU stay (r = 0.88, R(2) = 0.77, P<.001). Serum HCO(3) reliably predicted the presence of significant metabolic acidosis (BD > 5) with an area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) of 0.93 at admission and 0.95 overall (both P<.001), outperforming pH (AUC, 0.80), anion gap (AUC, 0.70), and lactate (AUC, 0.70). The admission serum HCO(3) level predicted ICU mortality as accurately as the admission arterial BD (AUCs of 0.68 and 0.70, respectively) and more accurately than either admission pH or anion gap. CONCLUSIONS: Serum HCO(3) provides equivalent information to the arterial BD and may be used as an alternative predictive marker or guide to resuscitation. Low HCO(3) levels should prompt immediate metabolic acidosis evaluation and management.
Matthew J Martin; Elizabeth FitzSullivan; Ali Salim; Thomas V Berne; Shirin Towfigh
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Comparative Study; Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Archives of surgery (Chicago, Ill. : 1960)     Volume:  140     ISSN:  0004-0010     ISO Abbreviation:  Arch Surg     Publication Date:  2005 Aug 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2005-08-16     Completed Date:  2005-09-01     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9716528     Medline TA:  Arch Surg     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  745-51     Citation Subset:  AIM; IM    
Division of Trauma and Surgical Critical Care, Department of Surgery, Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Acidosis / diagnosis*
Bicarbonates / blood*
Biological Markers / blood
Blood Gas Analysis*
Cohort Studies
Critical Care / methods
Critical Illness / mortality*
Hematologic Tests
Hospital Mortality*
Intensive Care / methods*
Middle Aged
Predictive Value of Tests
Reproducibility of Results
Retrospective Studies
Sensitivity and Specificity
Severity of Illness Index
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Bicarbonates; 0/Biological Markers
Comment In:
Arch Surg. 2006 Jan;141(1):105; author reply 105   [PMID:  16415422 ]

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