As the number of ICU survivors increases, the study will

INDIANAPOLIS – A new study from the Regenstrief Institute and Indiana University School of Medicine validates the caregiver version of the Healthy Aging Brain Care Monitor as an accurate and dynamic tool for monitoring post-intensive care unit (ICU) symptom burden in ICU survivors through their caregiver input and to provide clinically relevant information about new or changing physical, mental and emotional symptoms of adults who have received intensive care.

Researchers originally developed the Healthy Aging Brain Care (HABC) monitor to measure the severity of dementia symptoms in older adults. They have now shown that the caregiver version is an effective tool for assessing both the symptoms known collectively as post-intensive care syndrome and the impact of the syndrome on the patient’s caregiver.

“Throughout the pandemic, many adults of all ages have been sent to intensive care with serious illness. More than half of intensive care survivors suffer the long-term consequences of their illness. Clinicians and researchers need to better understand how these patients behave after discharge from hospital,” said study lead author Babar Khan, MD, MS, Regenstrief Institute researcher and associate professor of medicine at the IU School of Medicine. “The HABC Monitor – Caregiver Version gives us a snapshot each time the test is administered, allowing us to see the patient’s improvement or decline and learn how their caregiver is doing. There is no other tool that uses caregiver input to assess post-ICU syndrome symptoms The HABC Monitor – Caregiver Version couldn’t be more needed now.”

Symptoms of post-USI syndrome include anxiety, depression, lack of concentration, difficulty speaking, muscle weakness, reduced mobility, and breathing problems.

Answering the questions in the tool requires only a five to ten minute commitment from the caregiver, allowing clinicians to gain information to support treatment planning that the patient cannot provide due to a brain fog, memory lapses, judgment problems or other problems. Caregivers are asked to indicate the frequency over the past two weeks with which the patient has experienced specific physical, psychological and cognitive symptoms. Additionally, caregivers are asked to rate their own quality of life, financial future, and mental and physical health over the past two weeks.

The tool can be administered over the phone, during a telehealth appointment, or used in doctor’s offices as well as the growing number of critical care recovery centers open across the United States. The critical care recovery center model was developed by Dr. Khan and his colleagues.

“There is growing concern that COVID-19 survivors in intensive care are at higher risk for cognitive impairment and post-ICU dementia given the high incidence of delirium and stroke in this subset. of patients,” said study first author Sophia Wang, MD, IU School of Medicine assistant professor of clinical psychiatry. “The caregiver version of the HABC monitor provides us with an indispensable tool for early problem detection that is not limited by the patient’s degree of cognitive impairment.”

“Healthy Aging Brain Care Monitor, Caregiver Version: Screening for Post–Intensive Care Syndrome” is published in the American Journal of Critical Care. Authors in addition to Drs. Babar Khan and Wang are Sikandar Khan, DO, and Malaz Boustani, MD, MPH, from the Regenstrief Institute and IU School of Medicine; Yameena Jawed, MD., University of California, San Francisco; Anthony Perkins, MS.; Sujuan Gao, PhD; and Sarah Seyffert, MD., all from IU School of Medicine. The authors were supported by several grants from the National Institutes of Health.

Babar Khan, MD, MS

In addition to his appointment as a research scientist at the Regenstrief Institute and as associate director of the Indiana University Center for Aging in Regenstrief, Babar Khan, MD, MS, is an associate professor of medicine at IU School of Medicine and researcher Floyd and Reba Smith in Respiratory Disease.

About the Regenstrief Institute

Founded in 1969 in Indianapolis, the Regenstrief Institute is a local, national and global leader dedicated to a world where better information enables people to end disease and achieve true health. A key research partner of Indiana University, Regenstrief and its researchers are responsible for a growing number of major healthcare innovations and studies. Examples range from developing global health information technology standards that enable the use and interoperability of electronic health records, to improving patient-physician communications, to creating models of care that inform practice and improve the lives of patients around the world.

Sam Regenstrief, a nationally successful entrepreneur from Connersville, Indiana, founded the institute with the goal of making health care more efficient and accessible to everyone. His vision continues to guide the institute’s research mission.

About IU School of Medicine

IU School of Medicine is the largest medical school in the United States and is ranked among the top medical schools in the nation annually by US News & World Report. The school provides high-quality medical education, access to cutting-edge medical research, and rich campus life in nine Indiana cities, including rural and urban areas consistently recognized for their quality of life.


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