Inpatient Palliative Care Use among Critically III Brain Metastasis Patients in the United States

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Objective:The objective of this study was to understand the trends and characteristics of palliative care delivery among critically ill brain metastasis patients using a nationally representative database.Materials and Methods:This study was a retrospective analysis of Nationwide Inpatient Sample data collected during 2005 to 2014. This study included critically ill patients, 18 years and above, diagnosed with brain metastasis, identified using International Classification of Diseases-Ninth Revision-Clinical Modification diagnosis and procedure codes. Multivariable logistic regression models were used for predicting factors associated with inpatient palliative care use.Results:Among 18,309 critically ill patients with brain metastasis, 3298 (18.0%) received inpatient palliative care. The rate of inpatient palliative care use among these patients increased from 3.2% to 28.5%, during 2005 to 2014 (P<0.001). Regression analysis showed that hospital teaching status (odds ratio [ORs], 1.45; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.14-1.84), primaries located in head and neck (OR, 1.42; 95% CI, 1.21-2.05) or lung (OR, 1.32; 95% CI, 1.22-1.44), and primary diagnosis of pneumonia (OR, 1.42; 95% CI, 1.22-1.97) or septicemia (OR, 1.59; 95% CI, 1.30-1.97), were associated with higher palliative care use. Hispanic ethnicity (OR, 0.86; 95% CI, 0.67-0.96), and hospital location in Northeast (OR, 0.73; 95% CI, 0.54-0.96), Midwest (OR, 0.63; 95% CI, 0.45-0.87), or South (OR, 0.64; 95% CI, 0.48-0.86) were associated with lower palliative care use.Conclusions:Inpatient palliative care use increased significantly among critically ill patients with brain metastases, though overall rate was low. There were geographical and racial disparities among these patients. Health care providers and policy makers should focus on decreasing these disparities. In addition, hospitals should focus on adopting more palliative care services.

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