Thrombocytopenia in critically ill patients with severe sepsis/septic shock: Prognostic value and association with a distinct serum cytokine profile

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Purpose:The purpose of the study is to evaluate the incidence, association with serum cytokine profile, and prognostic value of thrombocytopenia, in critically ill patients with severe sepsis/septic shock.Methods:A cohort of 105 consecutive patients admitted in intensive care unit was included in our analysis. Serum levels of intercellular adhesion molecule, vascular cell adhesion molecule, interferon γ, interleukin 8, and soluble form of the urokinase-type plasminogen activator receptor (suPAR) were measured.Results:Thrombocytopenia was observed in 53% of patients at the time of admission. Platelet counts showed a statistically significant negative correlation with serum levels of intercellular adhesion molecule, suPAR, and interleukin 8 (P < .0001). In multivariate analysis, high Acute Physiological and Chronic Health Evaluation II score, high serum suPAR, and low platelet counts were associated with increased mortality, and receiver operating characteristic curve analysis was used to determine the best cutoff value for mortality prediction. Each variable with a value above or below the predefined cutoff levels were given 1 point. Patients were categorized in risk groups based on total point score. High-risk (2-3), intermediate-risk (1), and low-risk (0 points) groups consisted of 43%, 22%, and 35% and 28-day mortality was observed in 69%, 26%, and 3% of the patients in each group, respectively.Conclusion:Thrombocytopenia is associated with poor prognosis and a distinct serum cytokine profile.

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