OBJECTIVES: To derive distinct clusters of septic emergency department (ED) patients based on their presenting noninvasive hemodynamic (HD) measurements and to determine if any clinical parameters could identify these groups.
METHODS: Prospective, observational, convenience study of individuals with confirmed systemic infection. Presenting, pretreatment noninvasive HD parameters were compiled using Nexfin (Bmeye/Edwards LifeSciences) from 127 cases. Based on normalized parameters, k-means clustering was performed to identify a set of variables providing the greatest level of intercluster discrimination and intracluster cohesion.
RESULTS: Our best HD clustering model used 2 parameters: the cardiac index (CI [L/min per square meter]) and systemic vascular resistance index (SVRI [dynes·s/cm(5) per square meter]). Using this model, 3 different patient clusters were identified. Cluster 1 had high CI with normal SVRI (CI, 4.03 ± 0.61; SVRI, 1655.20 ± 348.08); cluster 2 low CI with increased vascular tone (CI, 2.50 ± 0.50; SVRI, 2600.83 ± 576.81); and cluster 3 very low CI with markedly elevated SVRI (CI, 1.37 ± 0.81; SVRI, 5951.49 ± 1480.16). Cluster 1 patients had the lowest 30-day overall mortality. Among clinically relevant variables available during the initial patient evaluation in the ED age, heart rate and temperature were significantly different across the 3 clusters.
CONCLUSIONS: Emergency department patients with confirmed sepsis had 3 distinct cluster groupings based on their presenting noninvasively derived CI and SVRI. Further clinical studies evaluating the effect of early cluster-specific therapeutic interventions are needed to determine if there are outcome benefits of ED HD phenotyping in these patients.