Long-term physical outcome in patients with septic shock

Acta Anaesthesiol Scand. 2009 Jul;53(6):724-30. doi: 10.1111/j.1399-6576.2009.01921.x. Epub 2009 Apr 15.


Background: Limited information is available on physical function after septic shock. The aim of the present study was to assess the physical outcome in survivors 1 year after septic shock.

Methods: The outcome status of all 174 adult patients admitted to a mixed ICU with the diagnosis septic shock in a 1-year period was registered. Survivors were interviewed about physical function and socioeconomic status using a questionnaire including the Short Form-36 survey. The pre-ICU-admission Functional Comorbidity Index (FCI) was also registered.

Results: Of the 80 survivors, two were still hospitalised; thus, 78 were invited to participate and 70 replied (inclusion-rate 88%). Patients were followed up at median 351 days after hospital discharge. At follow-up the patients had a markedly reduced physical component summary score (PCS) compared with age- and sex-adjusted general population controls (36 vs. 47, P<0.0001). This was also observed in patients with no comorbidity before ICU admission (34 vs. 47, P<0.001). There was a negative correlation (r=-0.27, P=0.03) between pre-ICU-admission FCI values and the PCS at follow-up. According to 81% of the patients, loss of muscle mass was the main cause of decreased physical function. Only 43% (10 vs. 23, P=0.01) of the previously employed had returned to work, and the number of patients in need of home-based personal assistance had doubled (10/20, P=0.04).

Conclusion: Physical function is substantially reduced in survivors of septic shock 1 year after discharge.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Data Interpretation, Statistical
  • Denmark / epidemiology
  • Employment
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Health Status
  • Health Surveys
  • Home Care Services / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Processes / physiology
  • Middle Aged
  • Recovery of Function
  • Shock, Septic / complications
  • Shock, Septic / physiopathology*
  • Shock, Septic / therapy
  • Social Welfare
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Survivors
  • Treatment Outcome