News scan of December 20, 2021
COVID intensive care patients with acute kidney disease at higher risk of death
A small observational study presented over the weekend at the Euroanesthesia Online Conference suggests that among COVID-19 patients admitted to intensive care units (ICUs), those with acute kidney disease (AKI) are more likely to die in hospital than those with a history of kidney disease.
According to a press release from the study’s sponsor, the European Society of Anesthesiology and Critical Care (ESAIC), the study also showed that dialysis did not significantly increase the chances of survival.
Austrian researchers retrospectively studied the 129 patients hospitalized for COVID-19 in two intensive care units in Vienna from September 1, 2020 to February 15, 2021. The median age of the patients was 66.5 years and two-thirds were men .
Thirty-three patients had a history of kidney disease, 26 were previously healthy kidney patients who developed AKI 5 days after admission to intensive care, and 70 patients had normal kidney function before and during their stay in care. intensive. Thirty-two patients required dialysis.
Of the 33 patients with pre-existing kidney disease, 55% survived their stay in intensive care, compared to 46% of those diagnosed with ARI and 83% of patients who maintained normal kidney function.
Both groups of patients with renal failure had significantly lower than average chances of survival, with a higher risk of death than those with normal renal function. The results suggest that neither the early initiation of dialysis nor the number of days on dialysis had much benefit in terms of survival, the authors said.
Lead author Katharina Oberneder, MD, of Sigmund Freud University, said the findings indicate that kidney dysfunction is a key risk factor for death from COVID-19 in intensive care patients. “Ultimately what is most important is to focus on the early diagnosis of acute kidney dysfunction and how we can use these results to improve the care of critically ill COVID-19 patients,” she declared.
Dec 17 ESAIC Press release
H5N1 avian influenza discovered in Estonian foxes and aquatic birds in France and Hong Kong
Three jurisdictions have reported highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza in populations other than poultry, including a fox, zoo birds and wild birds, according to the latest notifications from the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE).
Estonia reported the highly pathogenic H5N1 virus in a dead wild red fox found in the province of Hiiu on the island of Hiiumaa off the west Baltic coast. The results were confirmed on November 24. The report says the animal likely contracted the virus from other wildlife.
Elsewhere in Europe, France has reported the H5N1 virus in rose-backed pelicans at a zoo in the province of Occitanie, in the southwest of the country. The zoo keeps birds in aviaries and outdoors, including on a pond, near a wetland. The event began on December 14 and killed 3 of 65 susceptible birds.
In Asia, Hong Kong reported H5N1 in a black-faced spoonbill found dead on December 16 in a wet park in Yuen Long as part of ongoing surveillance. No detections were found in neighboring poultry farms.
Dec 17 OIE report on H5N1 virus in Estonian foxes
Dec 18 OIE report on H5N1 in a French zoo
Dec 20 OIE report on H5N1 in Hong Kong