Publication Date



Critical Care Medicine


OBJECTIVE: To explore ethnic differences in do-not-resuscitate orders after intracerebral hemorrhage.

DESIGN: Population-based surveillance.

SETTING: Corpus Christi, Texas.

PATIENTS: All cases of intracerebral hemorrhage in the community of Corpus Christi, TX were ascertained as part of the Brain Attack Surveillance in Corpus Christi (BASIC) project.


MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS: Medical records were reviewed for do-not-resuscitate orders. Unadjusted and multivariable logistic regression were used to test for associations between ethnicity and do-not-resuscitate orders, both overall ("any do-not-resuscitate") and within 24 hrs of presentation ("early do-not-resuscitate"), adjusted for age, gender, Glasgow Coma Scale, intracerebral hemorrhage volume, intraventricular hemorrhage, infratentorial hemorrhage, modified Charlson Index, and admission from a nursing home. A total of 270 cases of intracerebral hemorrhage from 2000-2003 were analyzed. Mexican-Americans were younger and had a higher Glasgow Coma Scale than non-Hispanic whites. Mexican-Americans were half as likely as non-Hispanic whites to have early do-not-resuscitate orders in unadjusted analysis (odds ratio 0.45, 95% confidence interval 0.27, 0.75), although this association was not significant when adjusted for age (odds ratio 0.61, 95% confidence interval 0.35, 1.06) and in the fully adjusted model (odds ratio 0.75, 95% confidence interval 0.39, 1.46). Mexican-Americans were less likely than non-Hispanic whites to have do-not-resuscitate orders written at any time point (odds ratio 0.37, 95% confidence interval 0.23, 0.61). Adjustment for age alone attenuated this relationship although it retained significance (odds ratio 0.49, 95% confidence interval 0.29, 0.82). In the fully adjusted model, Mexican-Americans were less likely than non-Hispanic whites to use do-not-resuscitate orders at any time point, although the 95% confidence interval included one (odds ratio 0.52, 95% confidence interval 0.27, 1.00).

CONCLUSIONS: Mexican-Americans were less likely than non-Hispanic whites to have do-not-resuscitate orders after intracerebral hemorrhage although the association was attenuated after adjustment for age and other confounders. The persistent trend toward less frequent use of do-not-resuscitate orders in Mexican-Americans suggests that further study is warranted.


Age Factors, Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Cerebral Hemorrhage, European Continental Ancestry Group, Female, Humans, Life Support Care, Male, Mexican Americans, Middle Aged, Prognosis, Regression Analysis, Resuscitation Orders, Texas



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