Introduction: Postoperative care after oesophageal tumour resection holds a high risk of respiratory complications. We therefore aimed to determine the value of systemic inflammatory markers in predicting arterial hypoxaemia as the earliest sign of developing lung injury after oesophageal tumour resection. Methods: In a prospective observational study, 33 consecutive patients were observed for three days (T1-T3) after admission (T0) to an intensive care unit following oesophageal tumour resection. The daily highest values of the heart rate, axillary temperature, leukocyte count and PaCO2 were recorded. Serum C-reactive protein and procalcitonin concentrations and the leukocyte antisedimentation rate (LAR) were determined at T1 and T2. Respiratory function was monitored 6-hourly measurement of the PaO2/FIO2 ratio, and the lowest value was recorded at T3. Patients were categorised as normoxaemic or hypoxaemic using the cutoff value of 300 mmHg for PaO2/FIO2. Results: Seventeen out of 33 patients were classified as hypoxaemic and 16 patients as normoxaemic at T3. Increases of temperature at T0 and of the procalcitonin and LAR values at T2 were predictive of hypoxaemia at T3 (P < 0.05, P < 0.01 and P < 0.001, respectively). The area under the receiver-operating characteristic curve was 0.65 for the temperature at T0, which was significantly lower than that for the procalcitonin level at T2 (0.83; 95% confidence interval, 0.69-0.97; P < 0.01) and that for LAR at T2 (0.89; 95% confidence interval, 0.77-1.00; P < 0.001). Conclusion: These results suggest that an elevated LAR (>15%) and an elevated procalcitonin concentration (>2.5 ng/ml) measured on the second postoperative day can predict next-day arterial hypoxaemia (PaO2/FIO2 < 300 mmHg) after oesophageal tumour resection.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine