Multiple Organ Dysfunction Syndrome: A Challenge for the Pediatric Critical Care Community : Pediatric Critical Care Medicine

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Multiple Organ Dysfunction Syndrome: A Challenge for the Pediatric Critical Care Community

Tamburro, Robert F. MD, MSc; Jenkins, Tammara L. MSN, RN, PCNS-BC

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Pediatric Critical Care Medicine 18(3):p S1-S3, March 2017. | DOI: 10.1097/PCC.0000000000001044


The multiple organ dysfunction syndrome is highly prevalent among critically ill children both at the time of their admission and throughout their PICU stay. It is associated with a wide variety of clinical conditions and diagnoses. In addition to its prevalence, it is closely associated with mortality, and the risk of death seems to increase as the number of failing organs increases. Thus, preventing the progression or development of organ failure holds promise as a method to improve outcomes for a wide range of critically ill children. However, despite being first described 4 decades ago, much remains to be learned about this syndrome including its triggering events, pathophysiology, and genetic predispositions. In addition, a better understanding of the influence of age and development on its occurrence and severity is needed as neonates and infants seem to be differentially afflicted. In an attempt to begin to address these issues, the Pediatric Trauma and Critical Illness Branch of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development convened experts in the field at a 2-day workshop to discuss this syndrome, identify key knowledge gaps, and consider potential opportunities for future research.

Copyright © 2016 by the Society of Critical Care Medicine and the World Federation of Pediatric Intensive and Critical Care Societies

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