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      Early mobilization of critically ill patients in the intensive care unit: A systematic review and meta-analysis

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          Abstract

          Background

          Physical therapy can prevent functional impairments and improve the quality of life of patients after hospital discharge. However, the effect of early mobilization on patients with a critical illness remains unclear. This study was performed to assess the evidence available regarding the effect of early mobilization on critically ill patients in the intensive care unit (ICU).

          Methods

          Electronic databases were searched from their inception to March 21, 2019. Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) comprising critically ill patients who received early mobilization were included. The methodological quality and risk of bias of each eligible trial were assessed using the Cochrane Collaboration tool. Data were extracted using a standard collection form each included study, and processed using the Mantel-Haenszel (M-H) or inverse-variance (I-V) test in the STATA v12.0 statistical software.

          Results

          A total of 1,898 records were screened. Twenty-three RCTs comprising 2,308 critically ill patients were ultimately included. Early mobilization decreased the incidence of ICU-acquired weakness (ICU-AW) at hospital discharge (three studies, 190 patients, relative risk (RR): 0.60, 95% confidence interval (CI) [0.40, 0.90]; p = 0.013, I 2 = 0.0%), increased the number of patients who were able to stand (one study, 50 patients, 90% vs. 62%, p = 0.02), increased the number of ventilator-free days (six studies, 745 patients, standardized mean difference (SMD): 0.17, 95% CI [0.02, 0.31]; p = 0.023, I 2 = 35.5%) during hospitalization, increased the distance the patient was able to walk unassisted (one study, 104 patients, 33.4 (0–91.4) meters vs. 0 (0–30.4) meters, p = 0.004) at hospital discharge, and increased the discharged-to-home rate (seven studies, 793 patients, RR: 1.16, 95% CI [1.00, 1.34]; p = 0.046). The mortality (28-day, ICU and hospital) and adverse event rates were moderately increased by early mobilization, but the differences were statistically non-significant. However, due to the substantial heterogeneity among the included studies, and the low quality of the evidence, the results of this study should be interpreted with caution. Publication bias was not identified.

          Conclusions

          Early mobilization appears to decrease the incidence of ICU-AW, improve the functional capacity, and increase the number of ventilator-free days and the discharged-to-home rate for patients with a critical illness in the ICU setting.

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          Most cited references48

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          Paresis acquired in the intensive care unit: a prospective multicenter study.

          Although electrophysiologic and histologic neuromuscular abnormalities are common in intensive care unit (ICU) patients, the clinical incidence of ICU-acquired neuromuscular disorders in patients recovering from severe illness remains unknown. To assess the clinical incidence, risk factors, and outcomes of ICU-acquired paresis (ICUAP) during recovery from critical illness in the ICU and to determine the electrophysiologic and histologic patterns in patients with ICUAP. Prospective cohort study conducted from March 1999 to June 2000. Three medical and 2 surgical ICUs in 4 hospitals in France. All consecutive ICU patients without preexisting neuromuscular disease who underwent mechanical ventilation for 7 or more days were screened daily for awakening. The first day a patient was considered awake was day 1. Patients with severe muscle weakness on day 7 were considered to have ICUAP. Incidence and duration of ICUAP, risk factors for ICUAP, and comparative duration of mechanical ventilation between ICUAP and control patients. Among the 95 patients who achieved satisfactory awakening, the incidence of ICUAP was 25.3% (95% confidence interval [CI], 16.9%-35.2%). All ICUAP patients had a sensorimotor axonopathy, and all patients who underwent a muscle biopsy had specific muscle involvement not related to nerve involvement. The median duration of ICUAP after day 1 was 21 days. Mean (SD) duration of mechanical ventilation after day 1 was significantly longer in patients with ICUAP compared with those without (18.2 [36.3] vs 7.6 [19.2] days; P =.03). Independent predictors of ICUAP were female sex (odds ratio [OR], 4.66; 95% CI, 1.19-18.30), the number of days with dysfunction of 2 or more organs (OR, 1.28; 95% CI, 1.11-1.49), duration of mechanical ventilation (OR, 1.10; 95% CI, 1.00-1.22), and administration of corticosteroids (OR, 14.90; 95% CI, 3.20-69.80) before day 1. Identified using simple bedside clinical criteria, ICUAP was frequent during recovery from critical illness and was associated with a prolonged duration of mechanical ventilation. Our findings suggest an important role of corticosteroids in the development of ICUAP.
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            Physical complications in acute lung injury survivors: a two-year longitudinal prospective study.

            Survivors of severe critical illness frequently develop substantial and persistent physical complications, including muscle weakness, impaired physical function, and decreased health-related quality of life. Our objective was to determine the longitudinal epidemiology of muscle weakness, physical function, and health-related quality of life and their associations with critical illness and ICU exposures.
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              Clinical review: intensive care unit acquired weakness

              A substantial number of patients admitted to the ICU because of an acute illness, complicated surgery, severe trauma, or burn injury will develop a de novo form of muscle weakness during the ICU stay that is referred to as “intensive care unit acquired weakness” (ICUAW). This ICUAW evoked by critical illness can be due to axonal neuropathy, primary myopathy, or both. Underlying pathophysiological mechanisms comprise microvascular, electrical, metabolic, and bioenergetic alterations, interacting in a complex way and culminating in loss of muscle strength and/or muscle atrophy. ICUAW is typically symmetrical and affects predominantly proximal limb muscles and respiratory muscles, whereas facial and ocular muscles are often spared. The main risk factors for ICUAW include high severity of illness upon admission, sepsis, multiple organ failure, prolonged immobilization, and hyperglycemia, and also older patients have a higher risk. The role of corticosteroids and neuromuscular blocking agents remains unclear. ICUAW is diagnosed in awake and cooperative patients by bedside manual testing of muscle strength and the severity is scored by the Medical Research Council sum score. In cases of atypical clinical presentation or evolution, additional electrophysiological testing may be required for differential diagnosis. The cornerstones of prevention are aggressive treatment of sepsis, early mobilization, preventing hyperglycemia with insulin, and avoiding the use parenteral nutrition during the first week of critical illness. Weak patients clearly have worse acute outcomes and consume more healthcare resources. Recovery usually occurs within weeks or months, although it may be incomplete with weakness persisting up to 2 years after ICU discharge. Prognosis appears compromised when the cause of ICUAW involves critical illness polyneuropathy, whereas isolated critical illness myopathy may have a better prognosis. In addition, ICUAW has shown to contribute to the risk of 1-year mortality. Future research should focus on new preventive and/or therapeutic strategies for this detrimental complication of critical illness and on clarifying how ICUAW contributes to poor longer-term prognosis.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Role: ConceptualizationRole: Formal analysisRole: Writing – original draft
                Role: Data curationRole: Software
                Role: Project administrationRole: Resources
                Role: SoftwareRole: Supervision
                Role: Data curationRole: Methodology
                Role: Data curationRole: Software
                Role: Software
                Role: Project administration
                Role: Visualization
                Role: Project administrationRole: Supervision
                Role: ConceptualizationRole: InvestigationRole: MethodologyRole: Writing – review & editing
                Role: Editor
                Journal
                PLoS One
                PLoS ONE
                plos
                plosone
                PLoS ONE
                Public Library of Science (San Francisco, CA USA )
                1932-6203
                3 October 2019
                2019
                : 14
                : 10
                : e0223185
                Affiliations
                [1 ] Department of Neurology, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, P.R. China
                [2 ] Department of Neurology, Chongqing General Hospital, Chongqing, P.R. China
                University of Notre Dame Australia, AUSTRALIA
                Author notes

                Competing Interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.

                [¤]

                Current address: Department of Neurology, Chongqing General Hospital, Chongqing, P.R. China

                Article
                PONE-D-19-01131
                10.1371/journal.pone.0223185
                6776357
                31581205
                b0a12d50-f8e0-4f0d-a675-1a1867090afa
                © 2019 Zhang et al

                This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

                History
                : 13 January 2019
                : 16 September 2019
                Page count
                Figures: 5, Tables: 2, Pages: 16
                Funding
                Funded by: the Science and Technology Planning Project of Yuzhong District of Chongqing
                Award ID: 20180136
                Award Recipient :
                This work was supported by the Science and Technology Planning Project of Yuzhong District of Chongqing (grant number 20180136 to JM). The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.
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