Determinants of long-term outcome in ICU survivors: results from the FROG-ICU study

Crit Care. 2018 Jan 18;22(1):8. doi: 10.1186/s13054-017-1922-8.


Background: Intensive care unit (ICU) survivors have reduced long-term survival compared to the general population. Identifying parameters at ICU discharge that are associated with poor long-term outcomes may prove useful in targeting an at-risk population. The main objective of the study was to identify clinical and biological determinants of death in the year following ICU discharge.

Methods: FROG-ICU was a prospective, observational, multicenter cohort study of ICU survivors followed 1 year after discharge, including 21 medical, surgical or mixed ICUs in France and Belgium. All consecutive patients admitted to intensive care with a requirement for invasive mechanical ventilation and/or vasoactive drug support for more than 24 h following ICU admission and discharged from ICU were included. The main outcome measure was all-cause mortality at 1 year after ICU discharge. Clinical and biological parameters on ICU discharge were measured, including the circulating cardiovascular biomarkers N-terminal pro-B type natriuretic peptide, high-sensitive troponin I, bioactive-adrenomedullin and soluble-ST2. Socioeconomic status was assessed using a validated deprivation index (FDep).

Results: Of 1570 patients discharged alive from the ICU, 333 (21%) died over the following year. Multivariable analysis identified age, comorbidity, red blood cell transfusion, ICU length of stay and abnormalities in common clinical factors at the time of ICU discharge (low systolic blood pressure, temperature, total protein, platelet and white cell count) as independent factors associated with 1-year mortality. Elevated biomarkers of cardiac and vascular failure independently associated with 1-year death when they are added to multivariable model, with an almost 3-fold increase in the risk of death when combined (adjusted odds ratio 2.84 (95% confidence interval 1.73-4.65), p < 0.001).

Conclusions: The FROG-ICU study identified, at the time of ICU discharge, potentially actionable clinical and biological factors associated with poor long-term outcome after ICU discharge. Those factors may guide discharge planning and directed interventions.

Trial registration: NCT01367093 . Registered on 6 June 2011.

Keywords: Biomarkers; Discharge; Long-term survival; Post-intensive care syndrome; Score.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Multicenter Study
  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Belgium / epidemiology
  • Cohort Studies
  • Critical Illness / epidemiology
  • Critical Illness / mortality
  • Female
  • France / epidemiology
  • Hospital Mortality
  • Hospitalization / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Intensive Care Units / organization & administration
  • Intensive Care Units / statistics & numerical data
  • Length of Stay / statistics & numerical data
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Odds Ratio
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care / methods*
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care / statistics & numerical data
  • Prospective Studies
  • Respiration, Artificial / methods
  • Respiration, Artificial / statistics & numerical data
  • Survivors / statistics & numerical data*
  • Time Factors*
  • Vasoconstrictor Agents / administration & dosage
  • Vasoconstrictor Agents / therapeutic use


  • Vasoconstrictor Agents

Associated data