Although delirium monitoring is recommended in international guidelines, there is lacking evidence for improved outcome due to it. We ypothesized that adherence to routine delirium monitoring would improve clinical outcome in adult critically ill patients. We present the results of a prospective, non-interventional, observational cohort study that was conducted on two ICUs of a tertiary care medical centre. We assessed delirium monitoring and outcome parameters on a daily basis. Of 355 screened patients, we included 185 surgical ICU patients into our final analysis of which 87 were mechanically ventilated. We found an independent association between delirium monitoring adherence and in-hospital mortality for ventilated patients (OR 0.973, p = 0.041). Estimating the effect-size, delirium monitoring indicated a reduction of 22% of in-hospital mortality if conducted ≥ 50% of ICU days per patient. The average ICU length of stay of 46 days was estimated to be reduced by 19 days (p = 0.031) if patients were sufficiently monitored.
These data suggest an improved outcome for mechanically ventilated ICU patients being screened for delirium in clinical routine.
Read the full paper in the Journal of Critical Care (article in press).