The Pediatric Risk of Mortality III--Acute Physiology Score (PRISM III-APS): a method of assessing physiologic instability for pediatric intensive care unit patients

J Pediatr. 1997 Oct;131(4):575-81. doi: 10.1016/s0022-3476(97)70065-9.


Objective: To develop a physiology-based measure of physiologic instability for use in pediatric patients that has an expanded scale compared with the Pediatric Risk of Mortality (PRISM) III score.

Study design: Data were collected from consecutive admissions to 32 pediatric ICUs (11,165 admission, 543 deaths). Patient-level data included physiologic data, outcomes, descriptive information, and diagnoses. Physiologic data included the most abnormal values in the first 24 hours of pediatric ICU stay from 27 variables. Initially, ranges of each physiologic variable were evaluated for their association with mortality. A multi-variate logistic regression analysis was used to determine the final variables and their ranges. Integer scores reflecting the relative contribution to mortality risk were assigned to the variable ranges.

Results: A total of 59 ranges of 21 physiologic variables were selected. This score is called the Pediatric Risk of Mortality III--Acute Physiology Score (PRISM III-APS). Mortality increased as the PRISM III-APS score increased. Most patients have PRISM III-APS scores less than 10, and these patients have a mortality risk of less than 1%. At the other extreme, the mortality rate of the 137 patients with a PRISM III-APS score of greater than 80 was greater than 97%.

Conclusion: The PRISM III-APS score is an expanded measure of physiologic instability that has been validated against mortality. Compared with PRISM III, PRISM III-APS should be more sensitive to small changes in physiologic status.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Age Factors
  • Brain Injuries / diagnosis
  • Brain Injuries / mortality
  • Cerebrovascular Disorders / diagnosis
  • Cerebrovascular Disorders / mortality
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Hospital Mortality*
  • Humans
  • Hypoxia / diagnosis
  • Hypoxia / mortality
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Intensive Care Units, Pediatric*
  • Patient Admission
  • Pneumonia / diagnosis
  • Pneumonia / mortality
  • Risk Factors
  • Sepsis / diagnosis
  • Sepsis / mortality
  • Survival Rate