Three Hypothetical Inflammation Pathobiology Phenotypes and Pediatric Sepsis-Induced Multiple Organ Failure Outcome

Carcillo, J. A.; Halstead, E. S.; Hall, M. W.; Nguyen, T. C.; Reeder, R.; Aneja, R.; Shakoory, B.; Simon, D.

Pediatr Crit Care Med. 2017 Apr 15; 18(6):513-523


OBJECTIVES: We hypothesize that three inflammation pathobiology phenotypes are associated with increased inflammation, proclivity to develop features of macrophage activation syndrome, and multiple organ failure-related death in pediatric severe sepsis. DESIGN: Prospective cohort study comparing children with severe sepsis and any of three phenotypes: 1) immunoparalysis-associated multiple organ failure (whole blood ex vivo tumor necrosis factor response to endotoxin < 200 pg/mL), 2) thrombocytopenia-associated multiple organ failure (new onset thrombocytopenia with acute kidney injury and a disintegrin and metalloproteinase with a thrombospondin type 1 motif, member 13 activity < 57%), and/or 3) sequential multiple organ failure with hepatobiliary dysfunction (respiratory distress followed by liver dysfunction with soluble Fas ligand > 200 pg/mL), to those without any of these phenotypes. SETTING: Tertiary children's hospital PICU. PATIENTS: One hundred consecutive severe sepsis admissions. INTERVENTIONS: Clinical data were recorded daily, and blood was collected twice weekly. MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS: Multiple organ failure developed in 75 cases and eight died. Multiple organ failure cases with any of the three inflammation phenotypes (n = 37) had higher inflammation (C-reactive protein, p = 0.009 and ferritin, p < 0.001) than multiple organ failure cases without any of these phenotypes (n = 38) or cases with only single organ failure (n = 25). Development of features of macrophage activation syndrome and death were more common among multiple organ failure cases with any of the phenotypes (macrophage activation syndrome: 10/37, 27%; death: 8/37, 22%) compared to multiple organ failure cases without any phenotype (macrophage activation syndrome: 1/38, 3%; p = 0.003 and death: 0/38, 0%; p = 0.002). CONCLUSIONS: Our approach to phenotype categorization remains hypothetical, and the phenotypes identified need to be confirmed in multicenter studies of pediatric multiple organ dysfunction syndrome.

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