Etiology of respiratory failure is related to mortality in critically ill patients affected by a hematological malignancy: a retrospective study

Minerva Anestesiol. 2010 Jan;76(1):7-12.


Aim: The outcomes of patients affected by hematologic malignancies (HM) admitted to Intensive Care Units (ICUs) because of life-threatening complications are still considered to be poor. The aim of this study was to assess the incidence and impact of cardiac dysfunction on the outcome of these patients.

Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the records of the 48 patients (both adult and pediatric) with HM admitted in our ICU over the last four years, collecting data on admission diagnosis, type of HM, laboratory values and organ failure.

Results: All patients were admitted with respiratory failure. The overall mortality rate was 50% and the mortality rates were similar among patients with different types of HM. Septic shock and multiple organ failure were the leading causes of death. The overall incidence of cardiac dysfunction was high (31%). Interestingly, the ICU mortality of this subgroup was 27%, while the mortality of the rest of the population was 61% (p<0.05).

Conclusions: ICU patients with HM have high mortality. Respiratory failure caused by cardiac dysfunction seems to be associated with a lower risk of death.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Critical Illness
  • Female
  • Heart Failure / complications
  • Hematologic Neoplasms / complications
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Intensive Care Units
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Respiratory Insufficiency / complications
  • Respiratory Insufficiency / etiology*
  • Respiratory Insufficiency / mortality*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Young Adult