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Pediatr Crit Care Med. 2016 Jul;17(7):605-14. doi: 10.1097/PCC.0000000000000766.

Does Simulation Improve Recognition and Management of Pediatric Septic Shock, and If One Simulation Is Good, Is More Simulation Better?

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1Division of Pediatric Critical Care, Children's Hospital of Nevada at UMC, Las Vegas, NV. 2Department of Pediatrics, University of Nevada School of Medicine, Las Vegas, NV. 3Department of Pediatrics, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA. 4Division of Pediatric Critical Care, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA. 5Division of Pediatric Critical Care, Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, Atlanta, GA.



Determine whether serial simulation training sessions improve resident recognition and initial septic shock management in a critically ill simulated septic shock patient, and to determine whether serial simulations further improve resident task performance when compared with a single simulation session.


Prospective observational cohort study with a live expert review of trainee simulation performance. Expert reviewers blinded to prior trainee performance.


A PICU room in a quaternary-care children's hospital, featuring a hi-fidelity pediatric patient simulator.


Postgraduate year-2 and postgraduate year-3 pediatric residents who rotate through the PICU.


Postgraduate year-3 residents as the control cohort, completing one simulation near the start of their third residency year. Postgraduate year-2 residents as the intervention cohort, completing two simulations during their second residency year and one near the start of their third residency year.


Resident objective performance was measured using a validated 27-item checklist (graded 0/1) related to monitoring, data gathering, and interventions in the diagnosis and management of pediatric septic shock. The intervention cohort had a higher mean performance percentage score during their third simulation than the control cohort completing their single simulation (87% vs 77%; p < 0.001). Septic shock was correctly diagnosed more often in the intervention cohort at the time of their third simulation (100% vs 78%; p < 0.001). Appropriate broad-spectrum antibiotics were administered correctly more often in the intervention cohort (83% vs 50%; p < 0.001).


Simulations significantly improved resident performance scores in the management of septic shock with repetitive simulation showing significant ongoing improvements. Further studies are needed to determine long-term impact on knowledge and skill retention and whether results attained in a simulation environment are translatable into clinical practice in improving bedside care.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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