To assess the prognostic utility of admission quick Sequential Organ Failure Assessment (qSOFA) scores for in-hospital mortality in a population of dogs with surgically treated sepsis.
Retrospective cohort study of dogs from January 2011 to January 2018.
University teaching hospital.
One thousand three hundred nine cases were identified with a clinical diagnosis of sepsis requiring surgical source control. Two hundred and four dogs with surgically treated sepsis met inclusion criteria, defined as: meeting 2 or more systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS) criteria with a documented source of infection. One hundred and forty-three cases of septic peritonitis, 26 cases of septic soft tissue infection, 20 cases of pyometra, and 15 cases of pyothorax were evaluated.
None.
Overall in-hospital mortality was 63 of 204 (30.9%). Patients with a qSOFA ≥ 2 were more likely to die or be euthanized (odds ratio [OR] 7.1, 95% confidence interval [CI] 2.9-16.4; P < 0.0001). Survivor and nonsurvivor qSOFA scores were significantly different in all categories. Dogs with septic peritonitis and a qSOFA ≥ 2 had an increased risk of postoperative complications (OR 3.9; 95% CI 1.3-11.1; P = 0.02). qSOFA scores were correlated with length of hospitalization in survivors of all-cause surgical sepsis (r = 0.28, P = 0.0007), septic peritonitis (r = 0.33, P = 0.001), and septic soft tissue infection (r = 0.59, P = 0.004).
This was the first study to retrospectively evaluate the prognostic utility of qSOFA scores in dogs surgically treated for sepsis. Dogs diagnosed with septic peritonitis and other causes of surgically treated sepsis with a qSOFA ≥ 2 may have a higher risk of in-hospital mortality, although future prospective studies are necessary.

© Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society 2021.