John Berger

Children's Hospital of Michigan, Detroit, Michigan, United States

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Publications (18)53.06 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: The cortisol response during critical illness varies widely among patients. Our objective was to examine single nucleotide polymorphisms in candidate genes regulating cortisol synthesis, metabolism, and activity to determine if genetic differences were associated with variability in the cortisol response among critically ill children.
    07/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE:: Determine if the shortest sampling interval for laboratory variables used to estimate baseline severity of illness in pediatric critical care is equivalently sensitive across multiple sites without site-specific bias, while accounting for the vast majority of dysfunction compared with the standard 0- to 12-hour Pediatric Risk of Mortality III score. DESIGN:: Prospective random patient selection. SETTING:: General/medical and cardiac/cardiovascular PICUs in eight hospitals. PATIENTS:: Patients younger than 18 years admitted to the PICU. INTERVENTIONS:: None. MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS:: A total of 376 patients were included. Measurements for Pediatric Risk of Mortality III laboratory variables (pH, PCO2, total CO2, PaO2, glucose, potassium, blood urea nitrogen, creatinine, total WBC count, platelet count, and prothrombin time/partial thromboplastin time) were recorded from 2 hours prior to PICU admission through 12 hours of PICU care except for data in the operating room. Decreasing the observation period from the 0 to 12 hours post PICU admission resulted in progressive decreases in the Pediatric Risk of Mortality III laboratory variables measured. However, allowing the observation period to start 2 hours prior to PICU admission to 4 hours reduced this loss to only 3.4%. Similar trends existed for each of the individual laboratory Pediatric Risk of Mortality III variables. There was a nearly identical distribution of laboratory Pediatric Risk of Mortality III points within the -2- to 4-hour period compared with the standard period. We did not detect any institutional bias using the -2- to 4-hour time period compared with the baseline. CONCLUSIONS:: Prognostically important laboratory physiologic data collected within the interval from 2 hours prior to PICU to admission through 4 hours after admission account for the vast majority of dysfunction that these variables would contribute to Pediatric Risk of Mortality III scores. There was no institutional bias associated with this sampling period.
    Pediatric Critical Care Medicine 04/2013; · 2.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVES:: To describe serum concentrations of zinc, selenium, and prolactin in critically ill children within 72 hrs of PICU admission, and to investigate relationships between these immunomodulators and lymphopenia. DESIGN:: An analysis of baseline data collected as part of the multicenter Critical Illness Stress Induced Immune Suppression (CRISIS) Prevention Trial. SETTING:: PICUs affiliated with the Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network. PATIENTS:: All children enrolled in the CRISIS Prevention Trial that had baseline serum samples available for analysis. INTERVENTIONS:: None. MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS:: Of 293 critically ill children enrolled in the CRISIS Prevention Trial, 284 had baseline serum samples analyzed for prolactin concentration, 280 for zinc concentration, and 278 for selenium concentration within 72 hrs of PICU admission. Lymphocyte counts were available for 235 children. Zinc levels ranged from nondetectable (< 0.1 μg/mL) to 2.87 μg/mL (mean 0.46 μg/mL and median 0.44 μg/mL) and were below the normal reference range for 235 (83.9%) children. Selenium levels ranged from 26 to 145 ng/mL (mean 75.4 ng/mL and median 74.5 ng/mL) and were below the normal range for 156 (56.1%) children. Prolactin levels ranged from nondetectable (< 1 ng/mL) to 88 ng/mL (mean 12.2 ng/mL and median 10 ng/mL). Hypoprolactinemia was present in 68 (23.9%) children. Lymphopenia was more likely in children with zinc levels below normal than those with zinc levels within or above the normal range (82 of 193 [42.5%] vs. 10 of 39 [25.6%], p = 0.0498). Neither selenium nor prolactin concentrations were associated with lymphopenia (p = 1.0 and p = 0.72, respectively). CONCLUSIONS:: Serum concentrations of zinc, selenium, and prolactin are often low in critically ill children early after PICU admission. Low serum zinc levels are associated with lymphopenia, whereas low selenium and prolactin levels are not. The implications of these findings and the mechanisms by which they occur merit further study.
    Pediatric Critical Care Medicine 02/2013; · 2.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVES:: Randomized clinical trials are commonly overseen by a Data and Safety Monitoring Board comprised of experts in medicine, ethics, and biostatistics. Data and Safety Monitoring Board responsibilities include protocol approval, interim review of study enrollment, protocol compliance, safety, and efficacy data. Data and Safety Monitoring Board decisions can affect study design and conduct, as well as reported findings. Researchers must incorporate Data and Safety Monitoring Board oversight into the design, monitoring, and reporting of randomized trials. DESIGN:: Case study, narrative review. METHODS:: The Data and Safety Monitoring Board's role during the comparative pediatric Critical Illness Stress-Induced Immune Suppression (CRISIS) Prevention Trial is described. FINDINGS:: The National Institutes of Health-appointed CRISIS Data and Safety Monitoring Board was charged with monitoring sample size adequacy and feasibility, safety with respect to adverse events and 28-day mortality, and efficacy with respect to the primary nosocomial infection/sepsis outcome. The Federal Drug Administration also requested Data and Safety Monitoring Board interim review before opening CRISIS to children below 1 yr of age. The first interim analysis found higher 28-day mortality in one treatment arm. The Data and Safety Monitoring Board maintained trial closure to younger children and requested a second interim data review 6 months later. At this second meeting, mortality was no longer of concern, whereas a weak efficacy trend of lower infection/sepsis rates in one study arm emerged. As over 40% of total patients had been enrolled, the Data and Safety Monitoring Board elected to examine conditional power and unmask treatment arm identities. On finding somewhat greater efficacy in the placebo arm, the Data and Safety Monitoring Board recommended stopping CRISIS due to futility. CONCLUSIONS:: The design and operating procedures of a multicenter randomized trial must consider a pivotal Data and Safety Monitoring Board role. Maximum study design flexibility must be allowed, and investigators must be prepared for protocol modifications due to interim findings. The Data and Safety Monitoring Board must have sufficient clinical and statistical expertise to assess potential importance of interim treatment differences in the setting of multiple looks at accumulating data with numerous outcomes and subgroups.
    Pediatric Critical Care Medicine 02/2013; · 2.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Despite the availability of highly effective vaccines, Bordetella pertussis incidence has been rapidly rising in highly vaccinated populations. Recent outbreaks have received media attention, feeding concerns about the emergence of dangerous new strains with increased virulence or that escape vaccine-induced immunity. To accelerate the study of this reemerging pathogen, we sequenced the genomes of 28 B. pertussis strains isolated during outbreaks from 2010 through 2012, making both strains and sequence data available to the scientific community.
    Genome announcements. 01/2013; 1(6).
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    ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE:: To examine the clinical factors associated with increased opioid dose among mechanically ventilated children in the pediatric intensive care unit. DESIGN:: Prospective, observational study with 100% accrual of eligible patients. SETTING:: Seven pediatric intensive care units from tertiary-care children's hospitals in the Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network. PATIENTS:: Four hundred nineteen children treated with morphine or fentanyl infusions. INTERVENTIONS:: None. MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS:: Data on opioid use, concomitant therapy, demographic and explanatory variables were collected. Significant variability occurred in clinical practices, with up to 100-fold differences in baseline opioid doses, average daily or total doses, or peak infusion rates. Opioid exposure for 7 or 14 days required doubling of the daily opioid dose in 16% patients (95% confidence interval 12%-19%) and 20% patients (95% confidence interval 16%-24%), respectively. Among patients receiving opioids for longer than 3 days (n = 225), this occurred in 28% (95% confidence interval 22%-33%) and 35% (95% confidence interval 29%-41%) by 7 or 14 days, respectively. Doubling of the opioid dose was more likely to occur following opioid infusions for 7 days or longer (odds ratio 7.9, 95% confidence interval 4.3-14.3; p < 0.001) or co-therapy with midazolam (odds ratio 5.6, 95% confidence interval 2.4-12.9; p < 0.001), and it was less likely to occur if morphine was used as the primary opioid (vs. fentanyl) (odds ratio 0.48, 95% confidence interval 0.25-0.92; p = 0.03), for patients receiving higher initial doses (odds ratio 0.96, 95% confidence interval 0.95-0.98; p < 0.001), or if patients had prior pediatric intensive care unit admissions (odds ratio 0.37, 95% confidence interval 0.15-0.89; p = 0.03). CONCLUSIONS:: Mechanically ventilated children require increasing opioid doses, often associated with prolonged opioid exposure or the need for additional sedation. Efforts to reduce prolonged opioid exposure and clinical practice variation may prevent the complications of opioid therapy.
    Pediatric Critical Care Medicine 11/2012; · 2.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Nosocomial infection/sepsis occurs in up to 40% of children requiring long-term intensive care. Zinc, selenium, glutamine, metoclopramide (a prolactin secretalogue), and/or whey protein supplementation have been effective in reducing infection and sepsis in other populations. We evaluated whether daily nutriceutical supplementation with zinc, selenium, glutamine, and metoclopramide, compared to whey protein, would reduce the occurrence of nosocomial infection/sepsis in this at-risk population. Randomized, double-blinded, comparative effectiveness trial. Eight pediatric intensive care units in the National Institutes of Child Health and Human Development Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network. Two hundred ninety-three long-term intensive care patients (age 1-17 yrs) expected to require >72 hrs of invasive care. Patients were stratified according to immunocompromised status and center and then were randomly assigned to receive daily enteral zinc, selenium, glutamine, and intravenous metoclopramide (n = 149), or daily enteral whey protein (n = 144) and intravenous saline for up to 28 days of intensive care unit stay. The primary end point was time to development of nosocomial sepsis/infection. The analysis was intention to treat. There were no differences by assigned treatment in the overall population with respect to time until the first episode of nosocomial infection/sepsis (median whey protein 13.2 days vs. zinc, selenium, glutamine, and intravenous metoclopramide 12.1 days; p = .29 by log-rank test) or the rate of nosocomial infection/sepsis (4.83/100 days whey protein vs. 4.99/100 days zinc, selenium, glutamine, and intravenous metoclopramide; p = .81). Only 9% of the 293 subjects were immunocompromised and there was a reduction in rate of nosocomial infection/sepsis with zinc, selenium, glutamine, and intravenous metoclopramide in this immunocompromised group (6.09/100 days whey protein vs. 1.57/100 days zinc, selenium, glutamine, and intravenous metoclopramide; p = .011). Compared with whey protein supplementation, zinc, selenium, glutamine, and intravenous metoclopramide conferred no advantage in the immune-competent population. Further evaluation of zinc, selenium, glutamine, and intravenous metoclopramide supplementation is warranted in the immunocompromised long-term pediatric intensive care unit patient.
    Pediatric Critical Care Medicine 11/2011; 13(2):165-73. · 2.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To describe pediatric severe asthma care, complications, and outcomes to plan for future prospective studies by the Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network. Retrospective cohort study. : Pediatric intensive care units in the United States that submit administrative data to the Pediatric Health Information System. Children 1-18 yrs old treated in a Pediatric Health Information System pediatric intensive care unit for asthma during 2004-2008. None. Thirteen-thousand five-hundred fifty-two children were studied; 2,812 (21%) were treated in a Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network and 10,740 (79%) were treated in a non-Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network pediatric intensive care unit. Medication use in individual Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network centers differed widely: ipratropium bromide (41%-84%), terbutaline (11%-74%), magnesium sulfate (23%-64%), and methylxanthines (0%-46%). Complications including pneumothorax (0%-0.6%), cardiac arrest (0.2%-2%), and aspiration (0.2%-2%) were rare. Overall use of medical therapies and complications at Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network centers were representative of pediatric asthma care at non-Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network pediatric intensive care units. Median length of pediatric intensive care unit stay at Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network centers was 1 to 2 days and death was rare (0.1%-3%). Ten percent of children treated at Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network centers received invasive mechanical ventilation compared to 12% at non-Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network centers. Overall 44% of patients who received invasive mechanical ventilation were intubated in the pediatric intensive care unit. Children intubated outside the pediatric intensive care unit had significantly shorter median ventilation days (1 vs. 3), pediatric intensive care unit days (2 vs. 4), and hospital days (4 vs. 7) compared to those intubated in the pediatric intensive care unit. Among children who received mechanical respiratory support, significantly more (41% vs. 25%) were treated with noninvasive ventilation and significantly fewer (41% vs. 58%) were intubated before pediatric intensive care unit care when treated in a Pediatric Health Information System hospital emergency department. Marked variations in medication therapies and mechanical support exist. Death and other complications were rare. More than half of patients treated with mechanical ventilation were intubated before pediatric intensive care unit care. Site of respiratory mechanical support initiation was associated with length of stay.
    Pediatric Critical Care Medicine 11/2011; 13(4):407-14. · 2.35 Impact Factor
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    Journal of the American College of Cardiology 05/2011; 57(20):e369. · 14.09 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To investigate critical care physicians' experiences and perspectives regarding follow-up meetings with parents after a child's death in the pediatric intensive care unit. Parents of children who die in the pediatric intensive care unit often desire a follow-up meeting with the physicians who cared for their child. Semistructured, audio-recorded telephone interviews. Six clinical centers affiliated with the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network. Seventy critical care physicians (i.e., attendings and fellows) practicing or training at a Child Health and Human Development Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network clinical center between February 1, 2008 and June 30, 2008. Twenty-three (33%) physicians reported never participating in a follow-up meeting with bereaved parents; 22 (31%) participated in one to five meetings; and 25 (36%) participated in more than five meetings. Of those with prior experience, 44 (94%) met with parents at the hospital and 40 (85%) met within 3 months of the death. Meeting content included discussing autopsy, parent questions, hospital course, cause of death, genetic risk, bereavement services, and legal or administrative issues; providing emotional support; and receiving parent feedback. Forty (85%) physicians perceived the meetings to be beneficial to families, and 35 (74%) to physicians. Barriers included time and scheduling, family and physician unwillingness, distance and transportation, language and cultural issues, parent anger, and lack of a system for meeting initiation and planning. Critical care physicians have a wide range of experience conducting follow-up meetings with bereaved parents. Although physicians perceive benefits to follow-up meetings, barriers exist that interfere with their implementation in clinical practice.
    Pediatric Critical Care Medicine 03/2011; 12(2):e64-8. · 2.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We previously demonstrated that parents whose children die in a pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) have a high level of complicated grief symptoms 6 months after the death. In this study, we investigate the change in the extent of complicated grief symptoms among these parents between 6 and 18 months postdeath and identify factors predicting improvement. One hundred thirty-eight parents of 106 children completed surveys at 6 and 18 months. Surveys included the Inventory of Complicated Grief (ICG), measures of grief avoidance, attachment, caregiving and social support, and demographics. Multivariable analysis was performed using generalized estimating equations to identify characteristics independently associated with improvement in ICG score. ICG scores were 33.4 ± 13.6 at 6 months and 28.0 ± 13.5 at 18 months, representing an improvement in ICG score of 5.4 + 8.0 (95% confidence interval [CI] 4.1-6.8, p < 0.001). Variables independently associated with greater improvement in ICG score included traumatic death and greater grief avoidance. Variables independently associated with less improvement included being the biological parent and having more responsive caregiving. Parents with one or two surviving children had more improvement in ICG score than those with no surviving children whereas parents with three or more surviving children had less improvement. Complicated grief symptoms decrease among parents between 6 and 18 months after their child's death in the PICU; however, high symptom levels persists for some. Better understanding of the trajectory of complicated grief will allow parents at risk for persistent distress to receive professional support.
    Journal of palliative medicine 02/2011; 14(2):207-14. · 1.84 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Ascertainment of adrenal function assessing free rather that total cortisol may be beneficial for the diagnosis of critical illness-related cortisol insufficiency. We hypothesized that centrifugal ultrafiltration would provide timely free cortisol data that highly correlated with the gold standard, but logistically cumbersome, equilibrium dialysis technique when the free cortisol fractions were identically quantified by chemiluminescence immunoassay. We also hypothesized that free cortisol would correlate with illness severity in a large cohort of critically ill children. Prospective, multi-institutional, observational cohort investigation. Seven pediatric intensive care units within the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network. One hundred sixty-five critically ill children across the spectrum of illness severity. Blood sampling. Time to derive plasma free cortisol concentrations after centrifugal ultrafiltration or equilibrium dialysis fractionation with chemiluminescence immunoassay was approximately 2 vs. approximately 24 hrs, respectively. Using centrifugal ultrafiltration, mean plasma free cortisol was 4.1 ± 6.7 μg/dL (median, 1.6 μg/dL; range, 0.2-43.6 μg/L), representing an average of 15.2 ± 9.4% of total cortisol. Nearly 60% of subjects exhibited free cortisol <2 and 30% <0.8 μg/dL, previously suggested threshold concentrations for defining critical illness-related cortisol insufficiency. Plasma-free cortisol concentrations comparing centrifugal ultrafiltration vs. equilibrium dialysis fractionation demonstrated a strong correlation (R2 = 0.97). For free cortisol <2 μg/dL, Bland-Altman analysis revealed minimal negative bias for the centrifugal ultrafiltration technique. Illness severity assessed by Pediatric Risk of Mortality III correlated moderately with free cortisol and percent total cortisol as free cortisol. Determination of centrifugal ultrafiltration fractionated free cortisol was fast and results correlated highly with equilibrium dialysis fractionated free cortisol. Many children exhibited free cortisol <2 and <0.8 μg/dL but did not demonstrate clinical evidence of critical illness-related cortisol insufficiency. This study ascertains that real-time free cortisol quantification is feasible to potentially help guide clinical decision-making for cortisol replacement therapy in the pediatric intensive care unit.
    Pediatric Critical Care Medicine 11/2010; 12(5):525-31. · 2.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To investigate the extent of complicated grief symptoms and associated risk factors among parents whose child died in a pediatric intensive care unit. Cross-sectional survey conducted by mail and telephone. Seven children's hospitals affiliated with the Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network from January 1, 2006, to June 30, 2008. Two hundred sixty-one parents from 872 families whose child died in a pediatric intensive care unit 6 months earlier. Assessment of potential risk factors, including demographic and clinical variables, and parent psychosocial characteristics, such as attachment style, caregiving style, grief avoidance, and social support. Parent report of complicated grief symptoms using the Inventory of Complicated Grief. Total scale range is from 0 to 76; scores of 30 or higher suggest complicated grief. Mean (SD) Inventory of Complicated Grief scores among parents were 33.7 (14.1). Fifty-nine percent of parents (95% confidence interval, 53%-65%) had scores of 30 or higher. Variables independently associated with higher symptom scores in multivariable analysis included being the biological mother or female guardian, trauma as the cause of death, greater attachment-related anxiety and attachment-related avoidance, and greater grief avoidance. Parents who responded to our survey experienced a high level of complicated grief symptoms 6 months after their child's death in the pediatric intensive care unit. However, our estimate of the extent of complicated grief symptoms may be biased because of a high number of nonresponders. Better understanding of complicated grief and its risk factors among parents will allow those most vulnerable to receive professional bereavement support.
    JAMA Pediatrics 11/2010; 164(11):1045-51. · 4.28 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: After prolonged opioid exposure, children develop opioid-induced hyperalgesia, tolerance, and withdrawal. Strategies for prevention and management should be based on the mechanisms of opioid tolerance and withdrawal. Relevant manuscripts published in the English language were searched in Medline by using search terms "opioid," "opiate," "sedation," "analgesia," "child," "infant-newborn," "tolerance," "dependency," "withdrawal," "analgesic," "receptor," and "individual opioid drugs." Clinical and preclinical studies were reviewed for data synthesis. Mechanisms of opioid-induced hyperalgesia and tolerance suggest important drug- and patient-related risk factors that lead to tolerance and withdrawal. Opioid tolerance occurs earlier in the younger age groups, develops commonly during critical illness, and results more frequently from prolonged intravenous infusions of short-acting opioids. Treatment options include slowly tapering opioid doses, switching to longer-acting opioids, or specifically treating the symptoms of opioid withdrawal. Novel therapies may also include blocking the mechanisms of opioid tolerance, which would enhance the safety and effectiveness of opioid analgesia. Opioid tolerance and withdrawal occur frequently in critically ill children. Novel insights into opioid receptor physiology and cellular biochemical changes will inform scientific approaches for the use of opioid analgesia and the prevention of opioid tolerance and withdrawal.
    PEDIATRICS 05/2010; 125(5):e1208-25. · 4.47 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To describe a framework to assist pediatric intensive care unit physicians in conducting follow-up meetings with parents after their child's death. Many childhood deaths occur in pediatric intensive care units. Parents of children who die in pediatric intensive care units often desire a follow-up meeting with the physician(s) who cared for their child. Prior research conducted by the Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network on the experiences and perspectives of bereaved parents and pediatric intensive care unit physicians regarding the desirability, content, and conditions of follow-up meetings. The framework includes suggestions for inviting families to follow-up meetings (i.e., developing an institutional system, invitation timing, and format); preparing for the meeting (i.e., assessing family preferences; determining location, attendees, and discussion topics; reviewing medical and psychosocial history); structure of the meeting (i.e., opening, closing, and developing a meeting agenda); communicating effectively during the meeting; and follow-up for both parents and physicians. This framework is based on the experience and perspectives of bereaved parents and pediatric intensive care unit physicians. Future research should be conducted to determine the extent to which physician-parent follow-up meetings provide a benefit to parents, families, physicians, and other healthcare providers participating in these encounters.
    Pediatric Critical Care Medicine 01/2010; · 2.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To update the pediatric critical care community on the progress of the Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network and plans for the future. The six sites, seven hospitals of the Collaborative Pediatric Critical Care Research Network. From the time of its inception in August 2005, the Network has engaged in a number of observational and interventional trials, several of which are ongoing. Additional studies are in the planning stages. To date, these studies have resulted in the publication of six manuscripts and five abstracts, with five additional manuscripts accepted and in press. The Network remains committed to its stated goal "to initiate a multicentered program designed to investigate the safety and efficacy of treatment and management strategies to care for critically ill children, as well as the pathophysiologic basis of critical illness and injury in childhood."
    Pediatric Critical Care Medicine 09/2009; 11(1):1-6. · 2.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Despite implementation of CDC recommendations and bundled interventions for preventing catheter-associated blood stream infection, ventilator-associated pneumonia, or urinary catheter-associated infections, nosocomial infections and sepsis remain a significant cause of morbidity and mortality in critically ill children. Recent studies suggest that acquired critical illness stress-induced immune suppression (CRISIS) plays a role in the development of nosocomial infection and sepsis. This condition can be related to inadequate zinc, selenium, and glutamine levels, as well as hypoprolactinemia, leading to stress-induced lymphopenia, a predominant T(H)2 monocyte/macrophage state, and subsequent immune suppression. Prolonged immune dysfunction increases the likelihood of nosocomial infections associated with invasive devices. Although strategies to prevent common complications of critical illness are routinely employed (eg, prophylaxis for gastrointestinal bleeding, thrombophlebitis), no prophylactic strategy is used to prevent stress-induced immune suppression. This is the authors' rationale for the pediatric CRISIS prevention trial (NCT00395161), designed as a randomized, double-blind, controlled clinical investigation to determine if daily enteral supplementation with zinc, selenium, and glutamine as well as parenteral metoclopramide (a dopamine 2 receptor antagonist that reverses hypoprolactinemia) prolongs the time until onset of nosocomial infection or sepsis in critically ill children compared to enteral supplementation with whey protein. If effective, this combined nutritional and pharmacologic approach may lessen the excess morbidity and mortality as well as resource utilization associated with nosocomial infections and sepsis in this population. The authors present the design and analytic plan for the CRISIS prevention trial.
    Journal of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition 05/2009; 33(4):368-74. · 2.49 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: There is a commonly held belief that randomized, placebo-controlled trials in pediatric critical care should incorporate "rescue" therapy (open-label administration of active drug) when a child's condition is deteriorating. The ethical, conceptual, and analytic challenges related to rescue therapy in randomized trials can be misrepresented. Narrative review. The ethical basis of rescue therapy, the equipoise concept, and intention-to-treat analysis are examined in the setting of a hypothetical randomized trial comparing corticosteroids vs. placebo in pediatric septic shock. The perceived need for rescue therapy may be partly motivated by the moral imperative to save a child's life. However, allowing rescue therapy in a trial is misconceived and inconsistent with equipoise regarding the efficacy of the study drug. If rescue therapy is permitted, intention-to-treat analysis can only compare immediate vs. delayed use of the study drug. When rescue therapy is beneficial, the observed treatment effect is substantially diminished from true effect of the study drug, leading to increased sample size and thereby placing more children at risk (18 "excess" placebo-arm deaths occur in our hypothetical example). Analysis of a trial incorporating rescue therapy cannot definitively assess overall efficacy of the agent, or distinguish beneficial or harmful treatment effects related to timing of drug use. Although a rescue therapy component in a randomized trial may be perceived as ethically desirable, inconsistency of rescue therapy with full equipoise may itself raise significant ethical concerns. Increased sample sizes expose more children to the risks of study participation, including death. Researchers should be aware that clinical trials designed with rescue therapy cannot definitively determine the beneficial or harmful effects of a treatment per se, and can only assess the effects of delayed vs. immediate provision of the treatment.
    Pediatric Critical Care Medicine 03/2009; 10(4):431-8. · 2.35 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

119 Citations
53.06 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2011
    • Children's Hospital of Michigan
      Detroit, Michigan, United States
    • Childrens Hospital of Pittsburgh
      Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States
  • 2009–2011
    • University of Utah
      • Department of Pediatrics
      Salt Lake City, UT, United States
    • University of Virginia
      • Department of Pediatrics
      Charlottesville, VA, United States
  • 2010
    • The University of Tennessee Health Science Center
      • Department of Pediatrics
      Memphis, TN, United States
    • Karmanos Cancer Institute
      Detroit, Michigan, United States
    • Children's National Medical Center
      Washington, Washington, D.C., United States