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The Capital Region of Denmark - a part of Copenhagen University Hospital
E-pub ahead of print

Oxygenation targets in ICU patients with COVID-19: a post-hoc sub-group analysis of the HOT-ICU trial

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BACKGROUND: Supplemental oxygen is the key intervention for severe and critical COVID-19 patients. With the unstable supplies of oxygen in many countries, it is important to define the lowest safe dosage.

METHODS: In spring 2020, 110 COVID-19 patients were enrolled as part of the Handling Oxygenation Targets in the ICU trial (HOT-ICU). Patients were allocated within 12 h of ICU admission. Oxygen therapy was titrated to a partial pressure of arterial oxygen (PaO2 ) of 8 kPa (lower oxygenation group) or a PaO2 of 12 kPa (higher oxygenation group) during ICU stay up to 90 days. We report key outcomes at 90 days for the subgroup of COVID-19 patients.

RESULTS: At 90 days, 22 of 54 patients (40.7%) in the lower oxygenation group and 23 of 55 patients (41.8%) in the higher oxygenation group had died (adjusted risk ratio: 0.87; 95% confidence interval, 0.58-1.32). The percentage of days alive without life support was significantly higher in the lower oxygenation group (p = 0.03). The numbers of severe ischemic events were low with no difference between the two groups. Proning and inhaled vasodilators were used more frequently, and the positive end-expiratory pressure was higher in the higher oxygenation group. Tests for interactions with the results of the remaining HOT-ICU population were insignificant.

CONCLUSIONS: Targeting a PaO2 of 8 kPa may be beneficial in ICU patients with COVID-19. These results come with uncertainty due to the low number of patients in this unplanned subgroup analysis, and insignificant tests for interaction with the main HOT-ICU trial.

TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT03174002. Date of registration: June 2, 2017.

Original languageEnglish
JournalActa Anaesthesiologica Scandinavica
ISSN0001-5172
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 23 Aug 2021

    Research areas

  • intensive care units, oxygen inhalation therapy, randomized controlled trial, respiratory insufficiency, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2

ID: 67446431