Validating Severity of Illness Scoring Systems in the Prediction of Outcomes in Staphylococcus aureus Bacteremia

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Background:Severity of illness scores are helpful in predicting mortality; however, no standardized scoring system has been validated in patients with Staphylococcus aureus bacteremia (SAB). The modified Rapid Emergency Medicine Score (REMS), the CURB-65 (confusion, urea, respiratory rate, blood pressure and age 65) and the Charlson weighted index of comorbidity (CWIC) were compared in predicting outcomes at the onset of SAB.Methods:All adult inpatients with SAB from July 15, 2008, to December 31, 2009, were prospectively assessed. The 3 scoring systems were applied: REMS, CURB-65 and CWIC. The end points were attributable and overall mortality.Results:A total of 241 patients with SAB were reviewed during the study period. The all-cause mortality rate was 22.8% and attributable mortality 14.1%. Patients who died had higher mean CURB-65 score and REMS than those who lived, whereas the difference in the CWIC score was not significant. Two logistic regression models based on CURB-65 score or REMS, after controlling for CWIC, revealed that both scores were independent predictors of mortality, with an odds ratio of 3.38 (P < 0.0001) and 1.45 (P < 0.0001) for CURB-65 and REMS, respectively. Receiver operating characteristic analysis revealed that a cutoff point of 3.0 (CURB-65) and 6.0 (REMS) provided the highest sensitivity and specificity. The area under the curves for all-cause mortality were 0.832 and 0.806, and for attributable mortality 0.845 and 0.819, for CURB-65 and REMS, respectively.Conclusions:REMS and CURB-65 scores outperformed CWIC as predictors of mortality in SAB and may be effective in predicting the severity of illness at the onset of bacteremia.

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