Clinical features and outcomes of critically ill patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19): A multicenter cohort study

Int J Infect Dis. 2021 Feb 15;105:180-187. doi: 10.1016/j.ijid.2021.02.037. Online ahead of print.


Background: Coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19) manifested by a broad spectrum of symptoms, ranging from asymptomatic manifestations to severe illness and death. The purpose of the study was to extensively describe the clinical features and outcomes in critically ill patients with COVID-19 in Saudi Arabia.

Method: This was a multicenter, non-interventional cohort study for all critically ill patients aged 18 years or older, admitted to intensive care units (ICUs) between March 1 to August 31, 2020, with an objectively confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19. The diagnosis of COVID-19 was confirmed by Reverse Transcriptase-Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) on nasopharyngeal and/or throat swabs. Multivariate logistic regression and generalized linear regression were used. We considered a P value of <0.05 statistically significant.

Results: A total of 560 patients met the inclusion criteria. An extensive list of clinical features was associated with higher 30-day ICU mortality rates, such as requiring mechanical ventilation (MV) or developing acute kidney injury within 24 hours of ICU admission, higher body temperature, white blood cells, blood glucose level, serum creatinine, fibrinogen, procalcitonin, creatine phosphokinase, aspartate aminotransferase, and total iron-binding capacity. During ICU stay, the most common complication was respiratory failure that required MV (71.4%), followed by acute kidney injury (AKI) and thrombosis with a proportion of 46.8% and 11.4%, respectively.

Conclusion: Among patients with COVID-19 who were admitted to the ICU, several variables were associated with an increased risk of ICU mortality at 30 days. Respiratory failure that required MV, AKI, and thrombosis were the most common complications during ICU stay.

Keywords: 30-day ICU mortality; COVID19; Clinical features; Critically ill; Intensive care units (ICUs).