Cardiac Arrest Outcomes in Children With Preexisting Neurobehavioral Impairment

Therapeutic Hypothermia After Pediatric Cardiac Arrest (THAPCA) Trial Investigators

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


OBJECTIVES: To describe survival and 3-month and 12-month neurobehavioral outcomes in children with preexisting neurobehavioral impairment enrolled in one of two parallel randomized clinical trials of targeted temperature management. DESIGN: Secondary analysis of Therapeutic Hypothermia after Pediatric Cardiac Arrest In-Hospital and Out-of-Hospital trials data. SETTING: Forty-one PICUs in the United States, Canada, and United Kingdom. PATIENTS: Eighty-four participants (59 in-hospital cardiac arrest and 25 out-of-hospital cardiac arrest), 49 males, 35 females, mean age 4.6 years (SD, 5.36 yr), with precardiac arrest neurobehavioral impairment (Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales, Second Edition composite score < 70). All required chest compressions for greater than or equal to 2 minutes, were comatose and required mechanical ventilation after return of circulation. INTERVENTIONS: Neurobehavioral function was assessed using the Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales, Second Edition at baseline (reflecting precardiac arrest status), and at 3 and 12 months postcardiac arrest, followed by on-site cognitive evaluation. Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales, Second Edition norms are 100 (mean) ± 15 (SD); higher scores indicate better function. Analyses evaluated survival, changes in Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales, Second Edition, and cognitive functioning. MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS: Twenty-eight of 84 (33%) survived to 12 months (in-hospital cardiac arrest, 19/59 (32%); out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, 9/25 [36%]). In-hospital cardiac arrest (but not out-of-hospital cardiac arrest) survival rate was significantly lower compared with the Therapeutic Hypothermia after Pediatric Cardiac Arrest group without precardiac arrest neurobehavioral impairment. Twenty-five survived with decrease in Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales, Second Edition less than or equal to 15 (in-hospital cardiac arrest, 18/59 (31%); out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, 7/25 [28%]). At 3-months postcardiac arrest, mean Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales, Second Edition scores declined significantly (-5; SD, 14; p < 0.05). At 12 months, Vineland Adaptive Behavior Scales, Second Edition declined after out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (-10; SD, 12; p < 0.05), but not in-hospital cardiac arrest (0; SD, 15); 43% (12/28) had unchanged or improved scores. CONCLUSIONS: This study demonstrates the feasibility, utility, and challenge of including this population in clinical neuroprotection trials. In children with preexisting neurobehavioral impairment, one-third survived to 12 months and their neurobehavioral outcomes varied broadly.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)510-517
Number of pages8
JournalPediatric critical care medicine : a journal of the Society of Critical Care Medicine and the World Federation of Pediatric Intensive and Critical Care Societies
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1 2019


ASJC Scopus subject areas

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

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