Time-to-antibiotics and clinical outcomes in patients with sepsis and septic shock: a prospective nationwide multicenter cohort study

the Korean Sepsis Alliance (KSA) investigators

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Timely administration of antibiotics is one of the most important interventions in reducing mortality in sepsis. However, administering antibiotics within a strict time threshold in all patients suspected with sepsis will require huge amount of effort and resources and may increase the risk of unintentional exposure to broad-spectrum antibiotics in patients without infection with its consequences. Thus, controversy still exists on whether clinicians should target different time-to-antibiotics thresholds for patients with sepsis versus septic shock. Methods: This study analyzed prospectively collected data from an ongoing multicenter cohort of patients with sepsis identified in the emergency department. Adjusted odds ratios (ORs) were compared for in-hospital mortality of patients who had received antibiotics within 1 h to that of those who did not. Spline regression models were used to assess the association of time-to-antibiotics as continuous variables and increasing risk of in-hospital mortality. The differences in the association between time-to-antibiotics and in-hospital mortality were assessed according to the presence of septic shock. Results: Overall, 3035 patients were included in the analysis. Among them, 601 (19.8%) presented with septic shock, and 774 (25.5%) died. The adjusted OR for in-hospital mortality of patients whose time-to-antibiotics was within 1 h was 0.78 (95% confidence interval [CI] 0.61–0.99; p = 0.046). The adjusted OR for in-hospital mortality was 0.66 (95% CI 0.44–0.99; p = 0.049) and statistically significant in patients with septic shock, whereas it was 0.85 (95% CI 0.64–1.15; p = 0.300) in patients with sepsis but without shock. Among patients who received antibiotics within 3 h, those with septic shock showed 35% (p = 0.042) increased risk of mortality for every 1-h delay in antibiotics, but no such trend was observed in patients without shock. Conclusion: Timely administration of antibiotics improved outcomes in patients with septic shock; however, the association between early antibiotic administration and outcome was not as clear in patients with sepsis without shock.

Original languageEnglish
Article number19
JournalCritical Care
Volume26
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2022
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Hour-1 bundle
  • Mortality
  • Sepsis
  • Septic shock
  • Time-to-antibiotics

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