Study Objective: This purpose of this study was to determine whether severity of illness, as defined by the intensive care unit (ICU) admission APACHE II (updated Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation) score, is correlated with early morning cortisol, dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), and/or dehydroepiandrosterone-sulfate (DHEA-S) concentrations. Design: Early morning concentrations of DHEA, DHEA-S, and cortisol were determined within 24 hrs of admission and compared with admission APACHE II scores. Setting: Medical (MICU), neurologic (NICU), and surgical (SICU) intensive care units of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. Patients:A total of 191 men and women ranging in age from 16 to 93 yrs. All had been admitted to an ICU. Measurements and Main Results: Statistically significant correlations between APACHE II scores and cortisol were observed for women in the MICU and SICU (r = .68, p = .0001; r = .35 p = .017, respectively) and for men in the NICU (r = .55, p = .003) and the SICU (r = .29, p = .036). The correlations between APACHE II scores and DHEA concentration data were stafistically significant for women in the MICU (r = .37, p = .047) and SICU (r = .43, p = .002), as was the correlation between APACHE II and DHEA-S concentrations among women in the SICU (r = .38, p = .008). Although not statistically significant, a similar relationship was observed in the smaller group of NICU women (r = .40, p = .099). Each correlation was essentially unchanged when adjusted for age. Conclusion: These data show a positive correlation between APACHE II and cortisol concentrations in all groups except the MICU men. Also evident is the positive correlation between APACHE II scores and DHEA and DHEA-S concentrations in women, but not in men.
- Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation II
- Intensive care unit
- Simplified Acute Physiology Score