Patient Outcomes and Characteristics in a Contemporary Quaternary Canadian Cardiac Intensive Care Unit

Luk A. C., Rodenas-Alesina E., Scolari F. L., Wang V. N., Brahmbhatt D. H., Hillyer A. G., ...More

CJC Open, vol.4, no.9, pp.763-771, 2022 (Scopus) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 4 Issue: 9
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.cjco.2022.06.004
  • Journal Name: CJC Open
  • Journal Indexes: Scopus, EMBASE, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Page Numbers: pp.763-771
  • TED University Affiliated: No


© 2022 The AuthorsBackground: The modern-day cardiac intensive care unit (CICU) has evolved to care for patients with acute critical cardiac illness. We describe the current population of cardiac patients in a quaternary CICU. Methods: Consecutive CICU patients admitted to the CICU at the Toronto General Hospital from 2014 to 2020 were studied. Patient demographics, admission diagnosis, critical care resources, complications, in-hospital mortality, and CICU and hospital length of stay were recorded. Results: A total of 8865 consecutive admissions occurred, with a median age of 64.9 years. The most common primary cardiac diagnoses were acute decompensated heart failure (17.8%), non ST-elevation myocardial infarction (16.8%), ST-elevation myocardial infarction (15.5%), and arrhythmias (14.7%). Cardiogenic shock was seen in 13.2%, and out-of-hospital cardiac arrest in 4.1%. A noncardiovascular admission diagnosis accounted for 13.9% of the cases. Over the period studied, rates of admission were higher for cardiogenic shock (P < 0.001 for trend), with a higher use of critical care resources. Additionally, rates of admission were higher in female patients and those who had chronic kidney disease and diabetes. The in-hospital mortality rate of all CICU admissions was 13.2%, and it was highest in those with noncardiac conditions, compared to the rate in those with cardiac diagnoses (29.4% vs 10.6%, P < 0.001). Conclusions: Given the trends of higher acuity of patients with cardiac critical illness, with higher use of critical care resources, education streams for critical care within cardiology, and alternative pathways of care for patients who have lower-acuity cardiac disease remain imperative to manage this evolving population.