The Role of Lactate for Sepsis in Polytrauma Patients, a Time related Analysis using the IBM Watson Trauma Pathway Explorer®

Author(s): Philipp Vetter, Cédric Niggli, Jan Hambrecht, Philipp Niggli, Jindrich Vomela, Richard Chaloupka, Hans-Christoph Pape, Ladislav Mica.

The Watson Trauma Pathway Explorer® is an outcome prediction tool invented by the University Hospital of Zurich in collaboration with IBM®, representing an artificial intelligence application to predict the most adverse outcome scenarios in polytrauma patients: Systemic Inflammatory Respiratory Syndrome (SIRS), sepsis within 21 days and death within 72 h. The hypothesis was how lactate values woud be associated with the incidence of sepsis. Data from 3653 patients in an internal database, with ongoing implementation, served for analysis. Patients were split in two groups according to sepsis presence, and lactate values were measured at formerly defined time points from admission until 21 days after admission for both groups. Differences between groups were analyzed; time points with lactate as independent predictor for sepsis were identified. The predictive quality of lactate at 2 and 12 h after admission was evaluated. Threshold values between groups at all timepoints were calculated. Lactate levels differed from less than 2 h after admission until the end of the observation period (21 d). Lactate represented an independent predictor for sepsis from 12 to 48 h and 14 d to 21 d after admission relative to ISS levels. AUROC was poor at 2 and 12 h after admission with a slight improvement at the 12 h mark. Lactate levels decreased over time at a range of 2 [mmol/L] for 6-8 h after admission. These insights may allow for time-dependent referencing of lactate levels and anticipation of subsequent sepsis, although further parameters must be considered for a higher predictability.

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