Children with chronic illness return to their baseline functional status after organ dysfunction on the first day of admission in the pediatric intensive care unit

J Pediatr. 2010 Jul;157(1):108-113.e1. doi: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2009.12.029. Epub 2010 Mar 10.


Objective: To determine chronic illness outcomes after admission with multiple organ dysfunction syndrome (MODS) for patients in the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU).

Study design: We evaluated consecutive PICU admissions from 35 US children's hospitals from January 2004-December 2005 in the virtual PICU Performance System database. We excluded hospitals with >10% missing values for MODS variables and patients<1 month or>18 years of age. MODS was identified by laboratory and vital sign values from day of admission with International Pediatric Sepsis Consensus Conference criteria. Chronic illness was identified by secondary diagnoses, classified by modified Delphi method. We evaluated functional outcomes with pediatric overall performance category and pediatric cerebral performance category scores from PICU admission and discharge.

Results: Of 44 693 admissions, 52.1% had a chronic diagnosis. Chronic diagnoses increased MODS at PICU admission (24.6% vs 12.0%, P<.001) and mortality rates (3.7% vs 1.9%, P<.001). Patients with a chronic diagnosis had similar changes in pediatric overall performance category and pediatric cerebral performance category scores from PICU admission to discharge as previously healthy children. However, outcome in different chronic diagnosis categories was variable.

Conclusions: Chronic illness increased MODS incidence at PICU admission and impacted all-cause PICU mortality rates. Although, in aggregate, children who survive return to baseline functional status, this varies by chronic illness category.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Chronic Disease / epidemiology*
  • Chronic Disease / mortality
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Intensive Care Units, Pediatric*
  • Male
  • Multiple Organ Failure / diagnosis*
  • Multiple Organ Failure / epidemiology*
  • Multiple Organ Failure / etiology
  • Multiple Organ Failure / mortality
  • Multiple Organ Failure / therapy
  • Outcome and Process Assessment, Health Care / standards*
  • Patient Admission / statistics & numerical data*
  • Patient Discharge
  • Prognosis
  • Risk Factors
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Time Factors
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Vital Signs