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Revista médica de Chile

versión impresa ISSN 0034-9887

Resumen

VEGA S, Jorge; PARODI E, María José  y  PUEBLA A, Claudio. Relationship between the cause of admission and the cause of death in patients admitted to an internal medicine departament . Rev. méd. Chile [online]. 2004, vol.132, n.6, pp.707-717. ISSN 0034-9887.  http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0034-98872004000600007.

Background: When patients are admitted to an internal medicine ward, they and their relatives believe that they will leave the internal medicine service in a better health condition or, if they die, their cause of death will be the same that motivated the hospital admission. Sometimes, patients die due to a different disease than the cause of admission or due to complications of diagnostic or therapeutic procedures. Aim: To assess the proportion of deaths that occurred in internal medicine wards for causes that differ from the cause for admission and the proportion of deaths related to complications of diagnostic or therapeutic procedures. Patients and methods: Three hundred and three consecutive patients were studied during 28 months. Their cause of death was classified in four groups: A. If it was the same illness of admission; B. A frecuent or expected complication of the illness that motivated the admission; C. A complication of one of their chronic diseases and not the one of admission; D. If it was not related to an already present chronic illness or the cause for admission. Results: Sixty nine percent of deaths corresponded to group A, 7.9% to group B, 11.2% to group C and 11.9% to group D. Diagnostic or therapeutic procedures were the cause of death in 0.7 and 3.6% of cases respectively. Conclusions: Twenty three percent of patients died due to causes that differ from the cause of admission. A low percentage of deaths were related to procedures and most of them were due to complications of therapeutic measures (Rev Méd Chile 2004; 132: 707-17)

Palabras clave : Cause of death; Fatal outcome; Hospital mortality.

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