Short-term mortality of bacteraemia in elderly patients with haematological malignancies
Bacterial infections are important complications in patients with haematological malignancies. We compared the outcome of bacteraemia among elderly and younger patients with haematological malignancies, and evaluated the impact of comorbidity on this association using population-based registries from 1992 to 2002. Among 358 patients with an incident haematological malignancy and an episode of bacteraemia, 207 (58%) were older than 60 years and 37 (10%) older than 80 years. The 7-d mortality was 10% among patients younger than 60 years, 21% among patients aged 60–79 years, and 27% for patients older than 80 years. When compared with patients younger than 60 years, the adjusted mortality rate ratios (MRRs) were 1·9 [95% confidence interval (CI): 0·9–3·8] for patients aged 60–79 years and 1·6 (95% CI: 0·6–4·2) for patients older than 80 years. The 30-d mortality was 23% among patients younger than 60 years of age, 35% among patients aged 60–79 years, and 54% among patients 80 years or older. Adjusted MRRs were 1·7 (95% CI: 1·1–2·7) and 2·3 (95% CI: 1·2–4·3), respectively. We found that increasing age was associated with increased mortality from bacteraemia in patients with haematological malignancies. An increased burden of comorbidity among the elderly did not explain this association.