Critical treatment and management have advanced over the recent decades, bringing many benefits but also causing increasing complication rates. Among these complications, neurological complications have an important place and may increase in mortality rates. The aim of our study was to find the causes of neurological consultations in the level 3 adult intensive care units (ICU).
The study population consisted of patients who were requested to have neurology consultation in the level 3 Adult ICUs between April 2013 and April 2017. The records in the hospital automation system of patients required neurology consultation were evaluated retrospectively.
A total of 906 neurology consultations were requested in ICUs and 302 patients were included in this study. Altered consciousness and unconsciousness (32.1%), seizure (26.5%), management and treatment (15.9%) were the most common reasons for neurological consultations. Epileptic seizures (16.9%), status epilepticus (9.3%) and ischemic stroke (8.6%) were the most common final neurological diagnoses after consultation. Wernicke encephalopathy, posterior reversible encephalopathy syndrome, motor neuron disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, critical illness polyneuropathy and critical illness myopathy were less frequently diagnosed (< 1%). The diagnostic benefit was 83.1%. Treatment change following neurological consultation occurred in 56.6% of the patients.
In our study, spanning a period of 4 years, the most common diagnoses were epileptic seizure, status epilepticus, and ischemic stroke. More frequent complications, such as stroke and seizure, as well as less common complications such as Wernicke’s encephalopathy and posterior reversible encephalopathy syndrome, should be intervened immediately. In case of consultation, neurologists should be able to manage neurological complications as a consultant physician in the early period and evaluate the ICU patient systematically and be familiar with the complexity of intubation, sedation and sometimes paralyzed intensive ICU patients who have had severely limited routine clinical evaluations.

Copyright © 2021 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.