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PURPOSE: Albumin has been shown to be safe and effective in clinical practice for a wide variety of indications. The purpose of this medication use evaluation is to quantify the use of albumin in the community hospital setting based on indication and prescribing department.

METHODS: This study is a retrospective, single-center, chart review over a 6-month period of 186 patients aged 18 and older who were treated with IV human albumin 5% or 25% at a single 202-bed community hospital setting from February 1, 2020, to August 1, 2020. A chart review was completed for each patient and the data collected included date of albumin administration, the ordering provider, the specialty of the provider, the indication for albumin as stated in the order, patient notes, crystalloid therapy use prior to albumin, albumin strength, the presence of acute or chronic renal, hepatic or respiratory disorders, and lab values denoting renal and hepatic function. Appropriate albumin use was determined utilizing criteria which included FDA labeled indications, the Surviving Sepsis Campaign, and existing literature.

RESULTS: A total of 186 patients received albumin 5% or 25% IV solution at least once during the study period. The study population was 52.2% female, and the average age was 68 years. Of the patients selected for the study, 23 (11.6%) had chronic hepatic disease, and 37 (18.7%) had chronic renal disease. The top indications for which albumin was administered were sepsis or septic shock (25.3%), hypotension or hypovolemia (19.4%), intra-dialytic hypotension (13.4%), fluid support in surgery (10.8%), and nephrosis or nephropathy (10.8%). The departments with highest albumin use during this study period were critical care (41%), nephrology (28%), and surgery (17%). Overall, albumin was used for an appropriate indication in 126 out of 186 patients (67.7%).

CONCLUSION: We found that albumin was most utilized for sepsis and septic shock, hypovolemia and hypotension, and intradialytic hypotension in our community hospital setting and it was most frequently ordered by critical care, nephrology, and surgical departments. Further research could determine if this trend is seen in other community hospital settings.

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PLoS One





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This article was published in PLoS One, Volume 16, Issue 10.

The published version is available at

Copyright © 2021 Coyle, John. CC BY 4.0.