Peripheral monocytosis as a predictive factor for adverse outcome in the emergency department: Survey based on a register study

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Monocytosis is associated with chronic infections such as tuberculosis or endocarditis as well as rheumatic and myeloproliferative disorders. Monocytes are also involved in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis, coronary artery disease, and stroke. The value of monocytosis as a prognostic marker in different diagnostic groups in the emergency setting, however, has not been investigated so far.

The aim of the article is to study monocytosis as an outcome factor in the emergency setting.

In a Swiss register study, we analyzed monocyte counts in 4238 patients aged >18 years who were admitted to the emergency department of a regional tertiary care hospital. Monocytosis was defined as 0.8×109 cells/L. Diagnoses were grouped into infection, cardiovascular, neurological, metabolic, gastrointestinal, pulmonary, or other. Thirty-day mortality was defined as the primary endpoint

A total of 1217 patients with monocytosis were identified. Patients with monocytosis at admission suffered more frequently from respiratory symptoms (17.7% vs 8.9%, P <.001) and infection as the final diagnosis (20.8% vs 10.3%, P <.001) while neurological diagnoses were significantly lower in the monocytosis group (15.3% vs 30.9%, P <.001). Patients with monocytosis suffered from more comorbidities such as congestive heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, tumor, diabetes, or renal failure but not dementia. When adjusted for age, gender, comorbidities, and main diagnosis, the 30-day mortality (P = .002) and length of stay (P = .001) were significantly higher in patients with monocytosis. The 30-day mortality in patients with monocytosis was most notably influenced by a cardiological diagnosis (odds ratio 3.91).

An increased monocyte count predicts adverse outcome in patients admitted to the emergency department. Mechanistic studies will be necessary to specify the potentially detrimental role of monocytosis in critical illness.

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