Navigation Links
Missed Diagnoses in ICU Often Have Deadly Results: Review
Date:8/28/2012

TUESDAY, Aug. 28 (HealthDay News) -- Misdiagnosis causes or contributes to as many as 40,500 patient deaths in intensive care units in U.S. hospitals each year, which is about the same number of deaths caused each year by breast cancer.

That's the finding of a team of researchers who reviewed 31 studies that provided details about more than 5,800 autopsies conducted to detect diagnostic errors in adult intensive care unit (ICU) patients.

The investigators found that 28 percent of those ICU patients -- more than one in four -- had at least one missed diagnosis at death. In 8 percent of the patients, the diagnostic error was serious enough that it may have caused or directly contributed to the patients' deaths and, if known, would have led to changes in their treatment.

Infections and vascular conditions, such as heart attack and stroke, accounted for more than three-quarters of the fatal diagnostic errors, according to the researchers at the Johns Hopkins Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality.

The conditions most commonly missed by medical staff included heart attack; pulmonary embolism, typically a blood clot in the lungs; pneumonia; and aspergillosis, a fungal infection that most commonly affects people with a weakened immune system. Together, these four conditions accounted for about one-third of all illnesses that doctors failed to detect in ICU patients.

The study was released online in advance of print publication in the journal BMJ Quality & Safety.

Despite the fact that diagnostic errors in the ICU claim so many lives a year, they are an underappreciated cause of preventable patient harm, the study authors noted in a Johns Hopkins news release.

"Our study shows that misdiagnosis is alarmingly common in the acute care setting," lead author Dr. Bradford Winters, an associate professor of anesthesiology and critical care medicine and neurology and surgery in the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, said in the news release.

"To date, there's been very little research to determine root causes or effective interventions," Winters said. He pointed out that less-deadly patient safety risks have received greater attention.

He and his colleagues also found that adult ICU patients are up to two times more likely to be the victim of a potentially fatal diagnostic mistake than adult hospital patients overall.

"It may be counterintuitive to think that the patients who are the most closely monitored and frequently tested are more commonly misdiagnosed, but the ICU is a very complex environment," Winters said.

In the ICU, doctors have to cope with a huge amount of information in a distracting setting in which the sickest patients in the hospital compete for attention, and most of the patients can't communicate with their medical team, he explained.

"We need to develop better cognitive tools that can take into account the 7,000 or more pieces of information that critical care physicians are bombarded with each day to ensure we're not ruling out potential diagnoses," Winters said.

Even if misdiagnoses in the ICU do not lead to patient death, they can lead to unnecessary surgery, a longer hospital stay and reduced quality of life for patients.

The study findings highlight the need for more research to identify the causes of misdiagnosis in the ICU and to develop ways to help doctors more accurately assess patients, the researchers concluded.

More information

The Society of Critical Care Medicine has more about critical care.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: Johns Hopkins Medicine, news release, Aug. 27, 2012


'/>"/>
Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Poor oral health can mean missed school, lower grades
2. Low-dose whole-body CT finds disease missed on standard imaging for patients with multiple myeloma
3. Johns Hopkins team finds ICU misdiagnoses may account for as many annual deaths as breast cancer
4. Dr. Davis Announces Some Diagnoses of ADHD May be Misinterpreted Visual Problems: Could Be Treated with Vision Therapy
5. With Very Sick Infants, Doctors and Parents Often Miscommunicate
6. Patients Often Kept in Dark About Off-Label Drug Use: Study
7. Doctors often dont disclose all possible risks to patients before treatment
8. Parents Spank, Slap Kids in Public More Often Than Thought
9. Why do infants get sick so often?
10. Sleep Loss Often Disruptive for City Kids With Asthma
11. College Students Who Use Tanning Beds Often Burn: Study
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Missed Diagnoses in ICU Often Have Deadly Results: Review
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... Bruton Memorial Library on June 21 due to a possible lice infestation, as reported by ... lice: the parasite’s ability to live away from a human host, and to infest common ... the event that lice have simply gotten out of control. , As lice are a ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... On Friday, June 10, Van ... Wellness at Work award to iHire in recognition of their exemplary accomplishments in worksite ... 7th annual Maryland Workplace Health & Wellness Symposium at the BWI Marriott in Linthicum ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... Marcy was in a crisis. Her son James, eight, was out of control. Prone to ... , “When something upset him, he couldn’t control his emotions,” remembers Marcy. “If there ... my other children and say he was going to kill them. If we were ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... Topical BioMedics, Inc, makers of Topricin and ... that call for a minimum wage raise to $12 an hour by 2020 and then ... will restore the lost value of the minimum wage, assure the wage floor does not ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... the Frederick area economy by obtaining investment capital for emerging technology companies. ... years that have already resulted in more than a million dollars of capital ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... CAMBRIDGE, Mass. , June 24, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... the Spaulding Rehabilitation Network,s Dean Center for ... of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, MIT Hacking Medicine, ... Center for Innovation, today announced the five finalists ... Hackathon for Lyme disease.  More than 100 scientists, ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 2016 Dehaier Medical Systems Ltd. (NASDAQ: ... markets and sells medical devices and wearable sleep respiratory ... strategic cooperation agreement with Hongyuan Supply Chain Management Co., ... June 20, 2016, to develop Dehaier,s new Internet medical ... Dehaier will leverage Hongyuan Supply Chain,s sales platform to ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... June 24, 2016   Pulmatrix, Inc ., (NASDAQ: ... innovative inhaled drugs, announced today that it was added ... reconstituted its comprehensive set of U.S. and global ... is an important milestone for Pulmatrix," said Chief Executive ... awareness of our progress in developing drugs for crucial ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: