Secondary Logo

Journal Logo

Institutional members access full text with Ovid®

Cardiac Arrest in the Pediatric Cardiac ICU

Is Medical Congenital Heart Disease a Predictor of Survival?*

Dhillon, Gurpreet S., MD1; Lasa, Javier J., MD1,2; Aggarwal, Varun, MD1; Checchia, Paul A., MD2; Bavare, Aarti C., MD2

Pediatric Critical Care Medicine: March 2019 - Volume 20 - Issue 3 - p 233–242
doi: 10.1097/PCC.0000000000001810
Cardiac Intensive Care

Objectives: Children with medical cardiac disease experience poorer survival to hospital discharge after cardiopulmonary arrest compared with children with surgical cardiac disease. Limited literature exists describing epidemiology and factors associated with mortality in this heterogeneous population. We aim to evaluate the clinical characteristics and outcomes after cardiopulmonary arrest in medical cardiac patients.

Design: We performed a retrospective review of pediatric cardiac patients who underwent cardiopulmonary resuscitation in a tertiary care cardiac ICU. Surgical cardiac patients underwent cardiac surgery immediately prior to ICU admission. Nonsurgical cardiac patients were divided into two groups based on the presence of congenital heart disease: congenital heart disease medical or noncongenital heart disease medical. Clinical and outcome variables were collected. Primary outcome was survival to hospital discharge.

Settings: Texas Children’s Hospital cardiac ICU.

Patients: Patients admitted to Texas Children’s Hospital cardiac ICU between January 2011 and December 2016.

Interventions: None.

Measurements and Main Results: Of 150 cardiopulmonary arrest events reviewed, 90 index events were included (46 surgical, 26 congenital heart disease medical, and 18 noncongenital heart disease medical). There was no difference in primary outcome among the three groups. The absence of an epinephrine infusion precardiopulmonary arrest was associated with increased odds of survival in the congenital heart disease medical group (p = 0.03). Noncongenital heart disease medical patients experienced pulseless ventricular tachycardia/ventricular fibrillation more frequently than congenital heart disease medical patients (p = 0.02). Congenital heart disease medical patients had trends toward longer cardiac arrest durations, higher prevalence of neurologic sequelae postcardiopulmonary arrest, and higher mortality when extracorporeal support at cardiopulmonary resuscitation was employed.

Conclusions: Although trends in first documented rhythm, neurologic sequelae, and inotropic support prior to cardiopulmonary arrest were noted between groups, no significant differences in survival after cardiac arrest were seen. Larger scale studies are needed to better describe factors associated with cardiopulmonary arrest as well as survival in heterogeneous medical cardiac populations.

1Department of Pediatrics, Lillie Frank Abercrombie Section of Cardiology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX.

2Section of Critical Care Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX.

*See also p. 293.

The authors have disclosed that they do not have any potential conflicts of interest.

For information regarding this article, E-mail:

©2019The Society of Critical Care Medicine and the World Federation of Pediatric Intensive and Critical Care Societies