To explore methods of evaluating the length of stay patterns of intensive care unit (ICU) patients.
It was hypothesized that the mean does not adequately describe the typical length of stay (central tendency) because distribution patterns are often markedly skewed by patients with extended stays.
Therefore, other descriptors are needed.
In addition, ways are needed to identify outliers-patients with stays longer or shorter than the bulk of the data.
Review of retrospective data.
University hospital surgical ICU.
Representative data included all (4,499) patients admitted over a 6-yr period.
Each was assigned to a diagnostic group that represented either a frequently performed surgical procedure (e.g., thymectomy) or in cases where there was no predominant procedure, a surgical discipline (e.g., otolaryngology).
The frequency distributions were usually skewed to the right and included two populations of interest : The portion with the majority of observations ( « body »), which described « typical » behavior, and the « tail », which provided information on outliers.
The average of the mean lengths of stay of all diagnostic groups was higher than the average of the medians (3.9 ± 1.8 [SD] vs. 2.7 ± 1.1 days, p<. 001) and modes (2.1 ± 1.2 days, p<. 001), reflecting the rightward skewness of the length of stay frequency distributions. (...)
Mots-clés Pascal : Unité soin intensif, Temps séjour, Hospitalisation, Evaluation, Méthode mesure, Homme
Mots-clés Pascal anglais : Intensive care unit, Residence time, Hospitalization, Evaluation, Measurement method, Human
Notice produite par :
Inist-CNRS - Institut de l'Information Scientifique et Technique
Cote : 97-0479595
Code Inist : 002B27B14C. Création : 03/02/1998.