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Published guidelines for sports restriction for children with a bicuspid aortic valve remain controversial. We sought to describe practice variation and factors influencing sports restrictions in these children.
This retrospective single-centre study included children (7–18 years old) with an isolated bicuspid aortic valve at baseline from 1 January, 2005 to 31 December, 2014. Sports restrictions, factors potentially influencing decision-making, and outcomes were collected. Descriptive statistics and multivariable mixed-effects logistic regression models were performed with providers and patients as random effects. Provider variation was estimated using intraclass correlation coefficients. Odds ratios, 95% confidence intervals, and p-values were reported from the models.
In 565 encounters (253 children; 34 providers), 41% recommended no sports restrictions, 40% recommended high-static and high-dynamic restrictions, and 19% had no documented recommendations. Based on published guidelines, 22% of children were inappropriately restricted while 30% were not appropriately restricted. The paediatric cardiology provider contributed to 37% of observed practice variation (p < 0.001). Sports restriction was associated with older age, males, greater ascending aorta z-score, and shorter follow-up interval. There were no aortic dissections or deaths and one cardiac intervention.
Physicians frequently fail to document sports restrictions for children with a bicuspid aortic valve, and documented recommendations often conflict with published guidelines. Despite this, no adverse outcomes occurred. Providers accounted for a significant proportion of the variation in sports restrictions. Further research to provide evidence-based guidelines may improve provider compliance with activity recommendations in this population.
To determine the Final ICU Need in the 24 hours prior to ICU discharge for children with cardiac disease by utilising a single-centre survey.
A cross-sectional survey was utilised to determine Final ICU Need, which was categorised as “Cardiovascular”, “Respiratory”, “Feeding”, “Sedation”, “Systems Issue”, or “Other” for each encounter. Survey responses were obtained from attending physicians who discharged children (≤18 years of age with ICU length of stay >24 hours) from the Cardiac ICU between April 2016 and July 2018.
Measurements and results:
Survey response rate was 99% (n = 1073), with 667 encounters eligible for analysis. “Cardiovascular” (61%) and “Respiratory” (26%) were the most frequently chosen Final ICU Needs. From a multivariable mixed effects logistic regression model fitted to “Cardiovascular” and “Respiratory”, operations with significantly reduced odds of having “Cardiovascular” Final ICU Need included Glenn palliation (p = 0.003), total anomalous pulmonary venous connection repair (p = 0.024), truncus arteriosus repair (p = 0.044), and vascular ring repair (p < 0.001). Short lengths of stay (<7.9 days) had significantly higher odds of “Cardiovascular” Final ICU Need (p < 0.001). “Cardiovascular” and “Respiratory” Final ICU Needs were also associated with provider and ICU discharge season.
Final ICU Need is a novel metric to identify variations in Cardiac ICU utilisation and clinical trajectories. Final ICU Need was significantly influenced by benchmark operation, length of stay, provider, and season. Future applications of Final ICU Need include targeting quality and research initiatives, calibrating provider and family expectations, and identifying provider-level variability in care processes and mental models.
This study evaluates the morbidity, mortality, and cost differences between patients who underwent either a simple or a complex arterial switch operation.
A retrospective study of patients undergoing an arterial switch operation at a single institution was performed. Simple cases were defined as patients with d-transposition of the great arteries with usual coronary anatomy or circumflex artery originating from the right with either intact ventricular septum or ventricular septal defect. Complex cases included all other forms of coronary anatomy, aortic coarctation or arch hypoplasia, and Taussig–Bing anomalies. Costs were acquired using an institutional activity-based accounting system.
A total of 98 patients were identified, 68 patients in the simple group and 30 in the complex group. The mortality rate was 2% for the simple and 7% for the complex group, p=0.23. Major morbidities including cardiac arrest, extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, a major coronary event, surgical or catheter-based re-intervention, stroke, or permanent pacemaker placement, non-cardiac surgical procedures, mediastinitis, and sepsis did not differ between the simple and complex groups (16 versus 27%, p=0.16). The complex group had increased bleeding requiring re-exploration (0 versus 10%, p=0.04). Hospital and ICU length of stay did not differ. Complex patients had higher overall hospital costs (simple $80,749 versus complex $97,387, p=0.01) and higher postoperative costs (simple $60,192 versus complex $70,132, p=0.02). The operating room and supplies accounted for the majority of the cost difference.
Complex arterial switches can be safely performed with low rates of morbidity and mortality but at an increased cost.
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