Prognostic Effects of Delayed Administration of Antimicrobial Therapy in Older Persons Experiencing Bacteremia With or Without Initial Sepsis Presentations

Ching Chi Lee, Po Lin Chen, Yi Tzu Huang, Ching Yu Ho, Ming Yuan Hong, Chih Chia Hsieh, Chih Hao Lin, Wen Chien Ko

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3 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives: To investigate the prognostic effects of delayed administration of appropriate antimicrobial therapy (AAT) in older persons experiencing bacteremia with and without initial sepsis syndrome, respectively. Design: A 4-year multicenter cohort study. Setting and Participants: Older people (≥65 years of age) with community-onset bacteremia in the emergency department (ED) of 3 participating hospitals. Methods: Clinical data were retrospectively collected and causative microorganisms were prospectively collected for susceptibilities to determine the period of delayed AAT for each bacteremia episode. Sepsis was defined based on the Sepsis-3 criteria. A multivariable regression model was used to investigate the prognostic effects of delayed AAT, after adjusting independent determinants of 30-day mortality. Results: Of the total 2357 patients, their median (interquartile range) age was 78 (72–84) years and septic patients accounted for 48.4% (1140 patients) of the overall patients. Compared with nonseptic patients, septic individuals exhibited the shorter period of delayed AAT (median, 2.0 vs 2.5 hours; P < .001), longer hospitalization (median, 11 vs 9 days; P < .001), and higher crude mortality rates at 15 (28.9% vs 2.1%; P < .001) and 30 days (34.6% vs 4.0%; P < .001). In multivariable regression analyses, each hour of delayed AAT resulted in average increases in the 30-day crude mortality rates of 0.38% [adjusted odds ratio (AOR) 1.0038; P < .001), 0.42% (AOR 1.0042; P < .001), and 0.31% (AOR 1.0031; P = .04) among overall, septic, and nonseptic patients, respectively. Conclusions and Implications: For older persons with community-onset bacteremia, irrespective of whether or not patients experiencing initial sepsis presentations, the prognostic impacts of delayed AAT have been evidenced. Notably, because of the longer period of delayed AAT in patients without fulfilling the Sepsis-3, adopting a stricter sepsis definition and/or early bacteremia predictor to avoid delayed AAT and unfavorable prognoses in patients with bacteremia is necessary.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)73-80
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of the American Medical Directors Association
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Jan

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Nursing
  • Health Policy
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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