Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Publication Title

Crit Care Med


INTRODUCTION: Recent data suggest it may be safe to administer vasopressors via peripheral IV (PIV), challenging convention that vasopressors must be delivered centrally. Surviving Sepsis Campaign 2021 guidelines suggest using peripheral vasopressors as a bridge to central access. However, little is known about vasopressor initiation in practice.

METHODS: Cohort study of patients hospitalized with community-onset sepsis at 12 hospitals in the Hospital Medicine Safety Consortium (HMS) sepsis initiative. HMS is a Collaborative Quality Initiative sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. A random sample of adult sepsis hospitalizations between 11/2020-1/2022 were included. Data were abstracted by trained abstractors. We sought to determine how commonly vasopressors were initiated via PIV vs central access across hospitals. HMS-Sepsis is expanding to 69 hospitals. Here we present pilot data; full cohort analysis is in process.

RESULTS: of 1,901 patients in the HMS-Sepsis registry at the time of pilot data analysis, 440 (23.1%) had hypotension (defined by mean arterial pressure< 65mmHg, systolic blood pressure< 90mmHg, and/or vasopressor initiation) within 3 hours of hospital arrival. of these, 160 (36.4%) received vasopressors within 6 hours of hospital arrival. Route of initial vasopressor was PIV in 122 (76.3%), central access in 30 (18.8%), midline catheter in 1 (0.6%), oral (ie, midodrine) in 5 (3.1%), and unknown in 2 (1.3%). Across all hospitals, 50.0% to 91.7% of vasopressor initiation was via PIV (median 83.3%). Among 122 patients with vasopressor initiation via PIV, 66 (54.1%) received a 2nd vasopressor, after a median of 2.8 hrs [IQR 1, 8] from 1st vasopressor. Route of 2nd vasopressor was PIV in 27 (40.9%) and central access in 30 (45.4%). Time from hypotension to vasopressor initiation did not differ between patients receiving initial vasopressor via PIV vs central access (median 1.9 vs 2.1 hrs, p=0.79). Likewise, IV fluids within 6 hrs (median 2.0 vs 2.1L, p=0.78), hospitalization length (median 7 vs 6 days, p=0.31), and inhospital mortality (33.6% vs 40.0%, p=0.51) were similar.

CONCLUSIONS: In this 12-hospital cohort, vasopressors were most frequently initiated peripherally. Outcomes were similar between patients in whom vasopressors were initiated via peripheral vs central access.





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