14 October 2020
Vancomycin is one of the most common therapeutic agents for treating gram-positive infections, particularly in critically ill patients. The aim of this study was to identify factors associated with initial therapeutic vancomycin trough levels and mortality in a tertiary-care intensive care unit (ICU).
This retrospective study evaluated 301 adult ICU patients admitted to King Abdulaziz Medical City in Riyadh between October 1, 2017 and December 31, 2018 with confirmed gram-positive infections and received intravenous vancomycin. Vancomycin trough levels of 15–20 mg/L for severe infections and 10–15 mg/L for less severe infections were considered therapeutic.
The patients were relatively older with a mean age of 60 (SD ±20) years. Initial vancomycin trough levels were therapeutic in 168 (55.8%). Factors associated with initial therapeutic vancomycin trough levels were female gender (adjusted odds ratio [aOR]=2.575), older age (aOR=1.024), receiving a loading dose (aOR=2.445), having bacteremia (aOR=2.061), and high platelet count (aOR=1.003). On the other hand, the increase of estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) (aOR=0.993) and albumin levels (aOR=0.944) were associated with lower odds of initial therapeutic vancomycin trough levels. Factors associated with higher mortality were female gender (adjusted hazard ratio [aHR]=2.630), increased body weight (aHR=1.021), cancer (aHR=3.451), and high APACHE II score (aHR=1.068).
The study identified several factors associated with achieving initial therapeutic vancomycin trough levels (i.e. older age, female gender, receiving a loading dose, bacteremia, high platelets count, low eGFR and albumin level). These factors should be considered in the dosing of vancomycin in critically ill patients with gram-positive infections.