Objective: Quantitative resuscitation consists of structured cardiovascular intervention targeting predefined hemodynamic end points. We sought to measure the treatment effect of quantitative resuscitation on mortality from sepsis.
Data sources: We conducted a systematic review of the Cochrane Library, MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, conference proceedings, clinical practice guidelines, and other sources using a comprehensive strategy.
Study selection: We identified randomized control trials comparing quantitative resuscitation with standard resuscitation in adult patients who were diagnosed with sepsis using standard criteria. The primary outcome variable was mortality.
Data abstraction: Three authors independently extracted data and assessed study quality using standardized instruments; consensus was reached by conference. Preplanned subgroup analysis required studies to be categorized based on early (at the time of diagnosis) vs. late resuscitation implementation. We used the chi-square test and I to assess for statistical heterogeneity (p < 0.10, I > 25%). The primary analysis was based on the random effects model to produce pooled odds ratios with 95% confidence intervals.
Results: The search yielded 29 potential publications; nine studies were included in the final analysis, providing a sample of 1001 patients. The combined results demonstrate a decrease in mortality (odds ratio 0.64, 95% confidence interval 0.43-0.96); however, there was statistically significant heterogeneity (p = 0.07, I = 45%). Among the early quantitative resuscitation studies (n = 6) there was minimal heterogeneity (p = 0.40, I = 2.4%) and a significant decrease in mortality (odds ratio 0.50, 95% confidence interval 0.37-0.69). The late quantitative resuscitation studies (n = 3) demonstrated no significant effect on mortality (odds ratio 1.16, 95% confidence interval 0.60-2.22).
Conclusion: This meta-analysis found that applying an early quantitative resuscitation strategy to patients with sepsis imparts a significant reduction in mortality.