Han JN, Liu YP, Ma S, Zhu YJ, Sui SH, Chen XJ, Luo DM, Adams AB, Marini JJ.
Respiratory Care Center, Peking Union Medical College Hospital, Peking Union Medical College, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, Beijing, China. email@example.com
INTRODUCTION: We investigated whether decreasing ventilator circuit changes from every 2 days to every 7 days would impact ventilator-associated pneumonia rates at our institution. METHODS: All mechanically ventilated patients at Peking Union Medical College Hospital were studied over a 21 month period. From March 1998 to February 1999, ventilator circuits were changed every 2 days, and from June through December 1999, ventilator circuits were changed every 7 days. Nosocomial pneumonia was identified using the criteria of the Centers for Disease Control. RESULTS: In the 2-day-change group, there were 2,277 ventilator-patient days and 38 patients developed pneumonia, resulting in a pneumonia rate of 16.7 cases per 1,000 ventilator days. The 7-day-change group accumulated 972 ventilator days and 8 patients contracted pneumonia, resulting in a pneumonia rate of 8.2 cases per 1,000 ventilator days. The pneumonia rate was significantly lower in the 7-day-change group (p = 0.007). To standardize for seasonal variability, we compared results from the same seasonal time frames (June to December 1998 for the 2-day-change group, and June to December 1999 for the 7-day-change group), and obtained similar findings: during those periods, pneumonia rates were 24.2 cases per 1,000 ventilator days for the 2-day-change group and 8.9 cases per 1,000 ventilator days for the 7-day-change group (p = 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: A circuit change interval of 7 days had a lower risk of ventilator-associated pneumonia than a 2-day change interval. Therefore, ventilator circuits can be safely changed every 7 days in our setting.