Outcomes of patients aged ≥80 years with respiratory failure initially treated with non-invasive ventilation in European intensive care units before and during COVID-19 pandemic Journal Articles uri icon

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  • Abstract Background Non-invasive ventilation (NIV) has been commonly used to treat acute respiratory failure due to COVID-19. In this study we aimed to compare outcomes of older critically ill patients treated with NIV before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. Methods We analysed a merged cohort of older adults admitted to intensive care units (ICUs) due to respiratory failure. Patients were enrolled into one of two prospective observational studies: before COVID-19 (VIP2—2018 to 2019) and admitted due to COVID-19 (COVIP—March 2020 to January 2023). The outcomes included: 30-day mortality, intubation rate and NIV failure (death or intubation within 30 days). Results The final cohort included 1986 patients (1292 from VIP2, 694 from COVIP) with a median age of 83 years. NIV was used as a primary mode of respiratory support in 697 participants (35.1%). ICU admission due to COVID-19 was associated with an increased 30-day mortality (65.5% vs. 36.5%, HR 2.18, 95% CI 1.71 to 2.77), more frequent intubation (36.9% vs. 17.5%, OR 2.63, 95% CI 1.74 to 3.99) and NIV failure (76.2% vs. 45.3%, OR 4.21, 95% CI 2.84 to 6.34) compared to non-COVID causes of respiratory failure. Sensitivity analysis after exclusion of patients in whom life supporting treatment limitation was introduced during primary NIV confirmed higher 30-day mortality in patients with COVID-19 (52.5% vs. 23.4%, HR 2.64, 95% CI 1.83 to 3.80). Conclusion The outcomes of patients aged ≥80 years treated with NIV during COVID-19 pandemic were worse compared then those treated with NIV in the pre-pandemic era.


  • Polok, Kamil
  • Fronczek, Jakub
  • Guidet, Bertrand
  • Artigas, Antonio
  • De Lange, Dylan W
  • Fjølner, Jesper
  • Leaver, Susannah
  • Beil, Michael
  • Sviri, Sigal
  • Bruno, Raphael Romano
  • Wernly, Bernhard
  • Pinto, Bernardo Bollen
  • Schefold, Joerg C
  • Studzińska, Dorota
  • Joannidis, Michael
  • Oeyen, Sandra
  • Marsh, Brian
  • Andersen, Finn H
  • Moreno, Rui
  • Cecconi, Maurizio
  • Flaatten, Hans
  • Jung, Christian
  • Szczeklik, Wojciech

publication date

  • September 12, 2023