Impact of surfactant when utilized during pediatric cardiac surgery admissions: analysis of a nationwide database


Cardiology Department, Advocate Children's Hospital


OBJECTIVE: Surfactant has been routinely used in the neonatal population, particularly in the setting of prematurity and neonatal respiratory distress syndrome. Current evidence, however, does not delineate the effect of surfactant use in neonates and older children during cardiac surgery admissions. This study aimed to characterize the impact of surfactant on pediatric cardiac surgery admissions.

METHODS: Admissions of those under 18 years of age with cardiac surgery were identified from the Pediatric Health Information System (PHIS) database between 2004 and 2015, using ICD-9 procedure codes. Univariate analyses were conducted to compare admission characteristics between those that did and not utilize surfactant. Variables shown to be significant were then entered as independent variables into the regression analyses. Surfactant was entered into each model as an independent variable.

RESULTS: A total of 81,313 admissions met the inclusion criteria. Of these, 109 (0.1%) had surfactant utilized. Univariate analyses identified several differences between admissions with and without surfactant use and demonstrated significantly increased mortality in the surfactant group (38.5% versus 4.6%,

CONCLUSIONS: Surfactant administration during pediatric cardiac surgery admissions is independently associated with a sixfold increase in inpatient mortality. It is likely that these findings are mediated by augmentation of the decrease in pulmonary vascular resistance and a subsequent decrease in systemic blood flow in the setting of parallel circulation. Surfactant should be administered with special consideration in neonates with cardiac disease and may be best avoided in those with parallel circulation.

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