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Oakland K, Kothiwale S, Forehand T, et al. External Validation of the Oakland Score to Assess Safe Hospital Discharge Among Adult Patients With Acute Lower Gastrointestinal Bleeding in the US. JAMA Netw Open. 2020;3(7):e209630. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.9630
Is the Oakland Score a valid tool for assessing the risk of adverse outcomes among a large population of adult patients with acute lower gastrointestinal bleeding in the United States?
In this prognostic study of 38 067 adult patients who were hospitalized with acute lower gastrointestinal bleeding, the Oakland Score consistently identified patients who were at low risk of experiencing adverse outcomes. Extension of the Oakland Score threshold from 8 points or lower to 10 points or lower for assessing whether a patient can safely be discharged from the hospital could detect more patients who have a low risk of experiencing adverse outcomes and potentially avoid hospitalization in 17.8% of patients whose conditions could safely be managed on an outpatient basis.
The findings of this study suggest that adoption of the Oakland Score into the triage process for patients presenting to hospitals in the US could reduce the rate of hospitalization among patients with acute lower gastrointestinal bleeding.
Lower gastrointestinal bleeding (LGIB), which manifests as blood in the colon or anorectum, is a common reason for hospitalization. In most patients, LGIB stops spontaneously with no in-hospital intervention. A risk score that could identify patients at low risk of experiencing adverse outcomes could help improve the triage process and allow greater numbers of patients to receive outpatient management of LGIB.
To externally validate the Oakland Score, which was previously developed using a score threshold of 8 points to identify patients with LGIB who are at low risk of adverse outcomes.
Design, Setting, and Participants
This multicenter prognostic study was conducted in 140 US hospitals in the Hospital Corporation of America network. A total of 46 179 adult patients (aged ≥16 years) admitted to the hospital with a primary diagnosis of LGIB between June 1, 2016, and October 15, 2018, were initially identified using diagnostic codes. Of those, 51 patients were excluded because they were more likely to have upper gastrointestinal bleeding, leaving a study population of 46 128 patients with LGIB. For the statistical analysis of the Oakland Score, an additional 8061 patients were excluded because they were missing data on Oakland Score components or clinical outcomes, resulting in 38 067 patients included in the analysis. The study used area under the receiver operating characteristic curves with 95% CIs for external validation of the model. Sensitivity and specificity were calculated for each score threshold (≤8 points, ≤9 points, and ≤10 points). Data were analyzed from October 16, 2018, to September 4, 2019.
Main Outcomes and Measures
Identification of patients who met the criteria for safe discharge from the hospital and comparison of the performance of 2 score thresholds (≤8 points vs ≤10 points). Safe discharge was defined as the absence of blood transfusion, rebleeding, hemostatic intervention, hospital readmission, and death.
Among 46 128 adult patients with LGIB, the mean (SD) age was 70.1 (16.5) years; 23 091 patients (50.1%) were female. Of those, 22 074 patients (47.9%) met the criteria for safe discharge from the hospital. In this group, the mean (SD) age was 67.9 (18.1) years, and 11 056 patients (50.1%) were female. In the statistical analysis of the Oakland Score, which included only the 38 067 patients with complete data, the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve for safe discharge was 0.87 (95% CI, 0.87-0.87). An Oakland Score threshold of 8 points or lower identified 3305 patients (8.7%), with a sensitivity and specificity for safe discharge of 98.4% and 16.0%, respectively. Extension of the Oakland Score threshold to 10 points or lower identified 6770 patients (17.8%), with a sensitivity and specificity for safe discharge of 96.0% and 31.9%, respectively.
Conclusions and Relevance
In this study, the Oakland Score consistently identified patients with acute LGIB who were at low risk of experiencing adverse outcomes and whose conditions could safely be managed without hospitalization. The score threshold to identify low-risk patients could be extended from 8 points or lower to 10 points or lower to allow identification of a greater proportion of low-risk patients.
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