Pulmonary arterial hypertensionin critically ill elderly patients

Yunyun Zhang, Fan Xu, Ming Chu, Li-qing Bi


Objective: To assess the incidence, possible risk factors and prognosis of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) in critically ill elderly patients.

Methods: We selected 122 cases admitted to the ICU, ages 60–93 years old. An echocardiography examination was performed within four days after admission to the ICU. PAH is usually suspected if the patient’s pulmonary artery systolic pressure ≥ 40 mmHg. We collected echocardiography data, relevant clinical data and routine laboratory data; we then used a statistical method to analyze the risk factors for PAH in critically ill elderly patients and examined its impact on the prognosis.

Results: Total 51 patients were diagnosed with PAH. The prevalence of critically ill elderly patients with PAH was 41.8%. The ANOVA analysis showed that if patients had COPD (P = 0.031) and/or respiratory failure (P = 0.021), they were more prone to PAH. An enlarged left atrium (P = 0.038) and/or right ventricle (P = 0.029), a declining left ventricle fractional shortening rate (P = 0.038), and an elevated amount of the brain natriuretic peptides (P = 0.046) were all associated with the occurrence of PAH. Multivariate regression analysis showed that the left atrial diameter (P = 0.045) was the risk factor in critically ill elderly patients with PAH. The 30-day mortality rate was 33.3% for elderly patients with PAH, which is statistically significant (P = 0.035) when compared with the mortality rate of patients with normal pulmonary artery pressure. Our multivariate regression analysis also showed that, for critically ill elderly patients admitted in the ICU, PAH (P = 0.039) is risk factor for increased mortality.

Conclusions: A higher incidence of PAH occurs in critically ill elderly patients. PAH is more likely to occur in patients with an enlarged left atrium, and these problems adversely impact the prognosis.

doi: https://doi.org/10.12669/pjms.331.10913

How to cite this:Zhang YY, Xu F, Chu M, Bi LQ. Pulmonary arterial hypertension in critically ill elderly patients. Pak J Med Sci. 2017;33(1):27-32.  doi: https://doi.org/10.12669/pjms.331.10913

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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