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01.12.2014 | Research article | Ausgabe 1/2014 Open Access

BMC Anesthesiology 1/2014

The influence of statin exposure on inflammatory markers in patients with early bacterial infection: pilot prospective cohort study

BMC Anesthesiology > Ausgabe 1/2014
Manu Shankar-Hari, Antonia Donnelly, Ruxandra Pinto, Zaid Salih, Cathrine McKenzie, Marius Terblanche, Neill KJ Adhikari
Wichtige Hinweise

Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (doi:10.​1186/​1471-2253-14-106) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

Competing interests

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Authors’ contributions

MT and NA conceived of the study. TD, ZS, CM and MT participated in coordination and data collection for the study. NA, MT, MSH and RP designed the analysis plan. RP conducted the statistical analysis, supervised by NA. MSH, MT and NA drafted the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript. AD and RP contributed equally to the study. MT is guarantor of the data.



In the context of infection, progressive illness resulting in acute organ dysfunction is thought to be secondary to inflammatory response. Our aims were to determine risk factors for progressive illness following infection in a low-risk hospitalised cohort, including the impact of prior stain therapy.


We performed a prospective observational cohort study on two adult acute medical wards of a single tertiary academic hospital. We screened drug prescription charts of all adult acute medical admissions for inclusion criteria of inpatient administration of antibiotics for more than 24 hours for a microbiologically confirmed or clinically suspected infection. Patients were followed until admission to a high dependency unit (HDU) or intensive care unit (ICU), discharge from hospital, or to a maximum of 10 days. Outcomes were evolution of systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS) criteria, white cell count and C-reactive protein measurements, and adverse clinical outcomes. We constructed multivariable models accounting for repeated within-patient measurements to determine associations between a priori selected predictors (days since admission, age, gender, Charlson score, prior statin exposure) and selected outcomes.


We enrolled 209 patients; 27.8% were statin users and the commonest infection was pneumonia (51.0%). Most (88.0%) had at least 1 SIRS criterion on admission, and 76 (37.3%) manifested additional SIRS criteria over time. Risks of admission to HDU/ICU (3.3%) and of 30-day mortality (5.7%) were low. The proportion of patients with at least 1 SIRS criterion, mean CRP, and mean WBC all decreased over time. Multivariable regression models identified days since hospital admission as the only variable associated with daily presence of SIRS criteria, WCC, or CRP (adjusted OR <1 and p < 0.0001 in all analyses). Statin exposure was not a significant predictor.


This cohort of ward patients treated for infection had a low risk of clinical deterioration, inflammatory markers improved over time, and statin exposure was not associated with any outcome. Future larger studies may identify risk factors for progression of illness in this population and plausible surrogate endpoints for evaluation in clinical trials.
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