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      Effectiveness of polymyxin B-immobilized fiber column in sepsis: a systematic review

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          Severe sepsis and septic shock are common problems in the intensive care unit and carry a high mortality. Endotoxin, one of the principal components on the outer membrane of gram-negative bacteria, is considered important to their pathogenesis. Polymyxin B bound and immobilized to polystyrene fibers (PMX-F) is a medical device that aims to remove circulating endotoxin by adsorption, theoretically preventing the progression of the biological cascade of sepsis. We performed a systematic review to describe the effect in septic patients of direct hemoperfusion with PMX-F on outcomes of blood pressure, use of vasoactive drugs, oxygenation, and mortality reported in published studies.


          We searched PubMed, the Cochrane Collaboration Database, and bibliographies of retrieved articles and consulted with experts to identify relevant studies. Prospective and retrospective observational studies, pre- and post-intervention design, and randomized controlled trials were included. Three authors reviewed all citations. We identified a total of 28 publications – 9 randomized controlled trials, 7 non-randomized parallel studies, and 12 pre-post design studies – that reported at least one of the specified outcome measures (pooled sample size, 1,425 patients: 978 PMX-F and 447 conventional medical therapy).


          Overall, mean arterial pressure (MAP) increased by 19 mm Hg (95% confidence interval [CI], 15 to 22 mm Hg; p < 0.001), representing a 26% mean increase in MAP (range, 14% to 42%), whereas dopamine/dobutamine dose decreased by 1.8 μg/kg per minute (95% CI, 0.4 to 3.3 μg/kg per minute; p = 0.01) after PMX-F. There was significant intertrial heterogeneity for these outcomes ( p < 0.001), which became non-significant when analysis was stratified for baseline MAP. The mean arterial partial pressure of oxygen/fraction of inspired oxygen (PaO 2/FiO 2) ratio increased by 32 units (95% CI, 23 to 41 units; p < 0.001). PMX-F therapy was associated with significantly lower mortality risk (risk ratio, 0.53; 95% CI, 0.43 to 0.65). The trials assessed had suboptimal method quality.


          Based on this critical review of the published literature, direct hemoperfusion with PMX-F appears to have favorable effects on MAP, dopamine use, PaO 2/FiO 2 ratio, and mortality. However, publication bias and lack of blinding need to be considered. These findings support the need for further rigorous study of this therapy.

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          Most cited references 46

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          Effect of a protective-ventilation strategy on mortality in the acute respiratory distress syndrome.

          In patients with the acute respiratory distress syndrome, massive alveolar collapse and cyclic lung reopening and overdistention during mechanical ventilation may perpetuate alveolar injury. We determined whether a ventilatory strategy designed to minimize such lung injuries could reduce not only pulmonary complications but also mortality at 28 days in patients with the acute respiratory distress syndrome. We randomly assigned 53 patients with early acute respiratory distress syndrome (including 28 described previously), all of whom were receiving identical hemodynamic and general support, to conventional or protective mechanical ventilation. Conventional ventilation was based on the strategy of maintaining the lowest positive end-expiratory pressure (PEEP) for acceptable oxygenation, with a tidal volume of 12 ml per kilogram of body weight and normal arterial carbon dioxide levels (35 to 38 mm Hg). Protective ventilation involved end-expiratory pressures above the lower inflection point on the static pressure-volume curve, a tidal volume of less than 6 ml per kilogram, driving pressures of less than 20 cm of water above the PEEP value, permissive hypercapnia, and preferential use of pressure-limited ventilatory modes. After 28 days, 11 of 29 patients (38 percent) in the protective-ventilation group had died, as compared with 17 of 24 (71 percent) in the conventional-ventilation group (P<0.001). The rates of weaning from mechanical ventilation were 66 percent in the protective-ventilation group and 29 percent in the conventional-ventilation group (P=0.005): the rates of clinical barotrauma were 7 percent and 42 percent, respectively (P=0.02), despite the use of higher PEEP and mean airway pressures in the protective-ventilation group. The difference in survival to hospital discharge was not significant; 13 of 29 patients (45 percent) in the protective-ventilation group died in the hospital, as compared with 17 of 24 in the conventional-ventilation group (71 percent, P=0.37). As compared with conventional ventilation, the protective strategy was associated with improved survival at 28 days, a higher rate of weaning from mechanical ventilation, and a lower rate of barotrauma in patients with the acute respiratory distress syndrome. Protective ventilation was not associated with a higher rate of survival to hospital discharge.
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            Diagnostic and prognostic implications of endotoxemia in critical illness: results of the MEDIC study.

            A novel assay for endotoxin, based on the ability of antigen-antibody complexes to prime neutrophils for an augmented respiratory burst response, was studied in a cohort study of 857 patients admitted to an intensive-care unit (ICU). On the day of ICU admission, 57.2% of patients had either intermediate (>or=0.40 endotoxin activity [EA] units) or high (>or=0.60 units) EA levels. Gram-negative infection was present in 1.4% of patients with low EA levels, 4.9% with intermediate levels, and 6.9% with high levels; EA had a sensitivity of 85.3% and a specificity of 44.0% for the diagnosis of gram-negative infection. Rates of severe sepsis were 4.9%, 9.2%, and 13.2%, and ICU mortality was 10.9%, 13.2%, and 16.8% for patients with low, intermediate, and high EA levels, respectively. Stepwise logistic regression analysis showed that elevated Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation II score, gram-negative infection, and emergency admission status were independent predictors of EA.
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              A pilot-controlled study of a polymyxin B-immobilized hemoperfusion cartridge in patients with severe sepsis secondary to intra-abdominal infection.

              Endotoxin is an important pathogenic trigger for sepsis. The polymyxin B-immobilized endotoxin removal hemoperfusion cartridge, Toraymyxin (hereafter PMX), has been shown to remove endotoxin in preclinical and open-label clinical studies. In a multicenter, open-label, pilot, randomized, controlled study conducted in the intensive care unit in six academic medical centers in Europe, 36 postsurgical patients with severe sepsis or septic shock secondary to intra-abdominal infection were randomized to PMX treatment of 2 h (n = 17) or standard therapy (n = 19). PMX was well tolerated and showed no significant side effects. There were no statistically significant differences in the change in endotoxin levels from baseline to 6 to 8 h after treatment or to 24 h after treatment between the two groups. There was also no significant difference in the change in interleukin (IL)-6 levels from baseline to 6 to 8 h after treatment or to 24 h after treatment between the two groups. Patients treated with PMX demonstrated significant increases in cardiac index (CI; P = 0.012 and 0.032 at days 1 and 2, respectively), left ventricular stroke work index (LVSWI, P = 0.015 at day 2), and oxygen delivery index (DO2I, P = 0.007 at day 2) compared with the controls. The need for continuous renal replacement therapy (CRRT) after study entry was reduced in the PMX group (P = 0.043). There was no significant difference between the groups in organ dysfunction as assessed by the Sequential Organ Failure Assessment (SOFA) scores from day 0 (baseline) to day 6. Treatment using the PMX cartridge is safe and may improve cardiac and renal dysfunction due to sepsis or septic shock. Further studies are needed to prove this effectiveness.

                Author and article information

                Crit Care
                Critical Care
                BioMed Central
                20 April 2007
                : 11
                : 2
                : R47
                [1 ]Department of Nephrology, Ospedale San Bortolo, Viale Rodolfi 37, 36100 Vicenza, Italy
                [2 ]Section of Nephrology, Department of Medicine, St. Luke's Medical Center, 279 E Rodriguez Sr Boulevard, Quezon City 1102, Philippines
                [3 ]Section of Nephrology, Department of Medicine, Yale University School of Medicine, 333 Cedar Street FMP 107, New Haven, CT 06520, USA
                [4 ]Department of Intensive Care and Department of Medicine, Austin & Repatriation Medical Centre, Studley Road, Heidelberg, Victoria 3084, Australia
                [5 ]Transplantation Unit, Surgical Services, Massachusetts General Hospital, 55 Fruit Street White 506, Boston, MA 02114, USA
                [6 ]Department of Anesthesia and Intensive Care, Ospedale San Giovanni Battista, Corso Bramante 88, 10126 Torino, Italy
                Copyright © 2007 Cruz et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

                This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


                Emergency medicine & Trauma


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