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Intensive Care Medicine

, Volume 37, Issue 6, pp 1006–1013 | Cite as

Improved survival in severe paraquat poisoning with repeated pulse therapy of cyclophosphamide and steroids

  • Ja-Liang Lin
  • Dan-Tzu Lin-Tan
  • Kuan-Hsing Chen
  • Wen-Hung Huang
  • Ching-Wei Hsu
  • Hsiang-Hao Hsu
  • Tzung-Hai Yen
Original

Abstract

Purpose

To clarify the efficacy of repeated methylprednisolone (MP) and cyclophosphamide (CP) pulse therapy and daily dexamethasone (DEX) therapy in patients with severe paraquat (PQ) poisoning.

Methods

A total of 111 patients with severe PQ poisoning and dark-blue color in urine tests within 24 h of intoxication were included prospectively. The control group consisted of 52 patients who were admitted between 1998 and 2001 and who received high doses of CP (2 mg/kg per day) and DEX (5 mg every 6 h) for 14 days. The study group consisted of 59 patients who were admitted from 2002 to 2007 and who received initial MP (1 g) for 3 days and CP (15 mg/kg per day) for 2 days, followed by DEX (5 mg every 6 h) until a PaO2 of >80 mmHg had been achieved, or treated with repeated 1 g MP for 3 days and 1 g CP for 1 day if the PaO2 was <60 mmHg.

Results

There were no differences between the two groups with regard to baseline data and plasma PQ levels. The study group patients had a lower mortality rate (39/59, 66%) than the control group patients (48/52, 92%; P = 0.003, log-rank test). Multivariate Cox regression analysis revealed that the repeated pulse therapy was correlated with decreased hazard ratios (HR) for all-cause mortality (HR = 0.50, 95% CI 0.31–0.80; P = 0.004) and death from lung fibrosis-related hypoxemia (HR = 0.10, 95% CI 0.04–0.25; P < 0.001) in severely PQ-intoxicated patients.

Conclusion

Repeated pulses of CP and MP, rather than high doses of CP and DEX, may result in a lower mortality rate in patients with severe PQ poisoning.

Keywords

Severe paraquat poisoning Mortality Repeated pulse therapy Methylprednisolone Cyclophosphamide 

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Copyright information

© Copyright jointly held by Springer and ESICM 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ja-Liang Lin
    • 1
    • 2
  • Dan-Tzu Lin-Tan
    • 1
    • 2
  • Kuan-Hsing Chen
    • 1
    • 2
  • Wen-Hung Huang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Ching-Wei Hsu
    • 1
    • 2
  • Hsiang-Hao Hsu
    • 1
    • 2
  • Tzung-Hai Yen
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Nephrology, Division of Clinical ToxicologyChang Gung Memorial HospitalTaipeiTaiwan, ROC
  2. 2.Lin-Kou Medical CenterChang Gung University and School of MedicineTaipeiTaiwan, ROC

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