Effect of Awake Prone Positioning on ROX Index in Critically-ill Patients With Respiratory Failure due to COVID-19

Ortac Ersoy E., Erdemir B., HALAÇLI B., GÜVEN G., Yildirim M., GELDİGİTTİ İ. T., ...More

Journal of Intensive Care Medicine, vol.38, no.12, pp.1158-1164, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 38 Issue: 12
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1177/08850666231186956
  • Journal Name: Journal of Intensive Care Medicine
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, MEDLINE
  • Page Numbers: pp.1158-1164
  • Keywords: acute hypoxemic respiratory failure, acute respiratory distress syndrome, corona virus, intensive care, oxygen saturation, pandemic, pneumonia, respiratory rate, SARS-CoV-2, severe acute respiratory syndrome
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


COVID-19 pneumonia causes acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). Prone positioning (PP) is beneficial to pulmonary physiology and improves oxygenation in patients with ARDS. We aimed to investigate the effect of the PP on oxygenation, respiratory rate (RR) and ROX index in non-intubated patients with COVID-19 associated respiratory failure and to determine whether ROX index predicts intubation. Awake critically-ill patients with confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 who underwent PP were enrolled in the retrospective, single-center study. Oxygenation parameters were recorded 1 h before PP, during PP and 1 h after return to supine position (after PP). Intubation was defined as the endpoint. Seventy-one patients with a median age of 64 [55-73] years were enrolled in the study. PaO2/FiO2 and SpO2/FiO2 improved during PP, this improvement did not persist after PP. RR improved during and after PP in both intubated and non-intubated patients (for all P <.001). ROX index improved only in non-intubated patients (P <.001) but not in intubated patients (P =.07). Area under the curve (AUC) of ROX index for intubation before PP, during PP and after PP were 0.74 [0.61-0.88] (P =.002), 0.76 [0.62-0.91] (P =.001), and 0.76 [0.64-0.89] (P =.001), respectively. ROX index >6.83 before PP had a negative predictive value (NPV) of 0.85; ROX index >8.28 during PP had a NPV of 0.88 and ROX index >7.48 after PP had a NPV of 0.85. In logistic regression adjusted for APACHE II score, ROX index ≤6.83 before PP had an odds ratio (OR) 4.47 [1.39-14.38], ROX index ≤8.28 during PP had an OR 7.96 [2.29-27.64] and ROX index ≤7.48 had an OR 3.98 [1.25-12.61] for prediction of intubation. In conclusion, awake PP improves oxygenation and decreases RR. ROX index improved only in non- intubated patients and a higher ROX index predicts lower risk of progressing to mechanical ventilation with intubation.