A nationwide study on characteristics and outcome of cancer patients with sepsis requiring intensive care.
Background: Sepsis is the leading cause of admission to the intensive care unit (ICU) for cancer patients and survival rates have historically been low. The aims of this nationwide cohort study were to describe the characteristics and outcomes of cancer patients admitted to the ICU with sepsis compared with other sepsis patients requiring ICU admission. Material and methods: This was a retrospective, observational study. All adult admissions to Icelandic ICUs during years 2006, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2016 were screened for severe sepsis or septic shock by ACCP/SCCM criteria. Clinical characteristics and outcomes of sepsis patients with cancer were compared to those without cancer. Results: In the study period, 235 of 971 (24%) patients admitted to Icelandic ICUs because of sepsis had cancer, most often a solid tumour (100), followed by metastatic tumours (69) and haematological malignancies (66). Infections were more often hospital-acquired in cancer patients (52%) than other sepsis patients (18%, p