Background: The shock index (SI) ratio serves as a straightforward predictor to identify patients who are either at risk of or experiencing shock. COVID-19 patients with shock face increased mortality risk and reduced chances of recovery. This review aims to determine the role of SI in the emergency department (ED) to predict COVID-19 patient outcomes. Methods: The systematic search was conducted in PubMed, ProQuest, Scopus, and ScienceDirect on June 16, 2023. We included observational studies evaluating SI in ED and COVID-19 patient outcomes. Random-effect meta-analysis was done to generate odds ratios of SI as the predictor of intensive care unit (ICU) admission and mortality. The sensitivity and specificity of SI in predicting these outcomes were also pooled, and a summary receiver operating characteristics (sROC) curve was generated. Results: A total of eight studies involving 4557 participants were included in the pooled analysis. High SI was found to be associated with an increased risk of ICU admission (OR 5.81 [95%CI: 1.18–28.58], p = 0.03). Regarding mortality, high SI was linked to higher rates of in-hospital (OR 7.45 [95%CI: 2.44–22.74], p = 0.0004), within 30-day (OR 7.34 [95%CI: 5.27–10.21], p < 0.00001), and overall (OR 7.52 [95%CI: 3.72–15.19], p < 0.00001) mortality. The sensitivity and specificity of SI for predicting ICU admission were 76.2% [95%CI: 54.6%–89.5%] and 64.3% [95%CI: 19.6%–93.0%], respectively. In terms of overall mortality, the sensitivity and specificity were 54.0% (95%CI: 34.3%–72.6%) and 85.9% (95%CI: 75.8%–92.3%), respectively, with only subtle changes for in-hospital and within 30-day mortality. Adjustment of SI cut-off to >0.7 yielded improved sensitivity (95%CI: 78.0% [59.7%–89.4%]) and specificity (95%CI: 76.8% [41.7%–93.9%]) in predicting overall mortality. Conclusion: SI in emergency room may be a simple and useful triage instrument for predicting ICU admission and mortality in COVID-19 patients. Future well-conducted studies are still needed to corroborate the findings of this study.
- ICU admission
- Shock index