Do-not-attempt resuscitation independently predict in-hospital mortality in septic patients

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Introduction: Sepsis patients require timely and appropriate treatment in an intensive care setting. However, “do-not-attempt resuscitation” (DNAR) status may affect physicians' priorities and treatment preferences. The aim of this study was to evaluate whether DNAR status affects the outcomes of septic patients. Methods: This was a retrospective cohort study included septic patients admitted to the emergency department intensive care unit (ED-ICU) in a university-based teaching hospital during April–November 2015. Septic patients admitted to the ED-ICU were included. Results: Of the 132 eligible patients, 49.2% (65/132) had DNAR status (median age 80 years old, IQR, 73–86). The overall in-hospital mortality rate was 28.8% (38/132). Non-survivors had a higher percentage of receiving inotropes/vasopressors (52.6% vs 34.0%, p = 0.048), higher median Charlson comorbidity index scores [8.5 (IQR, 7–11.75) vs 8 (IQR, 6–9), p = 0.012], higher APACHE II score [25 (IQR, 20–30.25) vs 20 (IQR, 17–25), p = 0.002], and higher SOFA score [7 (IQR, 6–11) vs 6 (IQR,4–8), p = 0.012]. There was no significant difference in intubation among the two groups. In a multivariate logistic regression analysis, DNAR status was an independent predictor of in-hospital mortality (odds ratio = 6.22, 95% confidence interval (CI) = (2.71–17.88), p < 0.001). The area under the ROC curve for the logistic regression model was 0.84 [95% CI = (0.77–0.92), p < 0.001]. In subgroup analysis, DNAR status remained an independent predictor of mortality among age ≥65 years and ≥80 years. Conclusion: After adjusting for comorbidities, treatments, and illness severity, DNAR status was associated with in-hospital mortality of septic patients. Further studies should evaluate physicians' attitudes toward septic patients with DNAR status.

Original languageEnglish
Article number158362
Pages (from-to)953-957
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Emergency Medicine
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2020


  • Do-not-attempt resuscitation
  • Sepsis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine


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