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Pediatr Crit Care Med. 2017 Sep;18(9):838-849. doi: 10.1097/PCC.0000000000001204.

Pediatric In-Hospital Acute Respiratory Compromise: A Report From the American Heart Association's Get With the Guidelines-Resuscitation Registry.

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1Department of Emergency Medicine, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA. 2Department of Anesthesiology, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark. 3Research Center for Emergency Medicine, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark. 4Department of Anesthesiology, Critical Care and Pediatrics, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA. 5Department of Emergency Medicine, Hasbro Children's Hospital, Providence, RI. 6Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Department of Medicine, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA.



The main objectives of this study were to describe in-hospital acute respiratory compromise among children (< 18 yr old), and its association with cardiac arrest and in-hospital mortality.


Observational study using prospectively collected data.


U.S. hospitals reporting data to the "Get With The Guidelines-Resuscitation" registry.


Pediatric patients (< 18 yr old) with acute respiratory compromise. Acute respiratory compromise was defined as absent, agonal, or inadequate respiration that required emergency assisted ventilation and elicited a hospital-wide or unit-based emergency response.




The primary outcome was in-hospital mortality. Cardiac arrest during the event was a secondary outcome. To assess the association between patient, event, and hospital characteristics and the outcomes, we created multivariable logistic regressions models accounting for within-hospital clustering. One thousand nine hundred fifty-two patients from 151 hospitals were included. Forty percent of the events occurred on the wards, 19% in the emergency department, 25% in the ICU, and 16% in other locations. Two hundred eighty patients (14.6%) died before hospital discharge. Preexisting hypotension (odds ratio, 3.26 [95% CI, 1.89-5.62]; p < 0.001) and septicemia (odds ratio, 2.46 [95% CI, 1.52-3.97]; p < 0.001) were associated with increased mortality. The acute respiratory compromise event was temporally associated with a cardiac arrest in 182 patients (9.3%), among whom 46.2% died. One thousand two hundred eight patients (62%) required tracheal intubation during the event. In-hospital mortality among patients requiring tracheal intubation during the event was 18.6%.


In this large, multicenter study of acute respiratory compromise, 40% occurred in ward settings, 9.3% had an associated cardiac arrest, and overall in-hospital mortality was 14.6%. Preevent hypotension and septicemia were associated with increased mortality rate.

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