Children undergoing heart transplant are at increased risk for postoperative vasodilatory shock

James S. Killinger, Daphne T. Hsu, Charles L. Schleien, Ralph S. Mosca, George E. Hardart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Objective: To determine the incidence of vasodilatory shock (VDS) in children after cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB), and to describe this syndrome of post-CPB VDS in children. Design: Prospective, observational. Setting: Pediatric and neonatal intensive care units in a tertiary care, children's hospital. Patients: Three hundred children undergoing CPB. nterventions: None. Measurements and Main Results: Three hundred subjects undergoing CPB were evaluated for clinical evidence of VDS following CPB. The incidence of post-CPB VDS was 3%. Characteristics of children who developed VDS: higher peak lactate (6.2 ± 2.6 vs. 3.0 ± 2.1 mmol/L; p = 0.0002), higher peak serum blood urea nitrogen (18.5 ± 4.6 vs. 15.6 ± 7.2 mg/dL; p = 0.04), lower urine output (1.7 ± 0.8 vs. 2.6 ± 0.2 mL/kg/hr; p = 0.04), and fewer intensive care unit free days (14.9 ± 9.0 vs. 21.1 ± 7.2 days; p = 0.01). Univariate predictors for the development of post-CPB VDS included children who had heart transplantation (HT) (relative risk [RR], 9.8; 95% confidence interval [CI], 2.7-35.2) or ventricular assist device (VAD) placed (RR, 17.9; 95% CI, 3.8-84.1), a cardiomyopathy diagnosis (RR, 8.5; 95% CI, 2.3-31), age >12 years (RR, 4.5; 95% CI, 1.2-17.0), CPB time >180 minutes (RR, 7.1; 95% CI, 1.9-26.2), and preoperative ventricular dysfunction (RR, 3.7; 95% CI, 1.0-13.4). By stratified analysis, the only independent predictor for the development of VDS was undergoing HT/VAD. Conclusions: Post-CPB VDS is uncommon in children. However, children who undergo HT or VAD placement are at high risk for developing post-CPB VDS. Recognition that the overall incidence of post-CPB is low-except in the HT/VAD population-may help guide therapy in the pediatric post-CPB patient.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)335-340
Number of pages6
JournalPediatric Critical Care Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Cardiopulmonary bypass
  • Heart transplantation
  • Pediatric
  • Shock

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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