The overall median length of stay was 8 days, and overall mortality during hospitalization was 2.8%. In patients with mild disease, the shortest lengths of stay were in North America (4 vs. 7 days in other regions), and severe disease was more common in India (23% vs. 9% elsewhere).
Intensive care unit admissions were highest at Indian centers, and in-hospital mortality was highest in Europe (5.7%), compared with 3.3% in India, 2.3% in Latin America, and 0.6% in North America, they said.
Mortality during the initial hospital stay among patients with severe acute pancreatitis was 44% in Europe, compared with 15% in the other three regions.
Multivariable regression analyses adjusting for potential confounders such as age, sex, body mass index, Charlson score, etiology, and transfer status showed that the odds of severe acute pancreatitis were 11.2 times higher in Europe, 7 times higher in India, and 5.6 times higher in Latin America, compared with North America.
The odds ratios for mortality during hospitalization among patients with severe disease were 10.4 in Europe, 4.2 in India, and 8.3 in Latin America, compared with North America.
Implications of the findings
Around the world, acute pancreatitis is a leading cause of gastrointestinal-related hospital admissions, and incidence is reportedly increasing in the United States and Europe, the investigators said, noting that about 20% of patients develop severe disease with relatively high morbidity and mortality.
Multiple advances in management have emerged over the last decade, but it is unclear whether those recent advances have gained traction worldwide, they added.
The APPRENTICE registry was created as a response to the lack of prospective, multinational data and the current study aimed to assess the geographic differences in patient characteristics, management, and outcomes across four geographic areas.
The findings, which represent “a bird’s eye view” of regional variation, underscore a need for “adequately powered, multicenter, randomized controlled trials comparing the efficacy of different fluid resuscitation protocols” in acute pancreatitis patients, the investigators said.
Further, “the interventions specific to each region are in certain aspects strikingly divergent, and in many occasions lag behind current evidence,” they wrote, noting the largely variable length-of-stay outcomes and mortality rates.
“In addition to depicting key features of [acute pancreatitis], the results from this study may serve as a reference guide for designing future clinical trials,” they concluded.
The authors reported having no disclosures.
SOURCE: Matt B et al. Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2019. doi: