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Shock: A Common Pathway For Life-Threatening Pediatric Illnesses And Injuries

October 2005

THERE may be nothing more anxiety-provoking for a physician than caring for a previously healthy infant or young child who presents in shock. Once a child’s condition has progressed to this point, it can be very difficult to determine the exact cause. Shock is a common pathway for a multitude of life-threatening illnesses and injuries. As the child’s condition worsens, the similarities among the clinical presentations of the divergent causes of shock overwhelm the differences. Fortunately, there are fundamental principles applicable to multiple causes of shock in children. In this issue of Pediatric Emergency Medicine  PRACTICE, we will present an approach to pediatric shock based, as far as possible, on the available evidence.

Abbreviations Used In This Article

APC — activated protein C
ARDS — adult respiratory distress syndrome
ATN — acute tubular necrosis
CVP — central venous pressure
DIC — disseminated intravascular coagulation
ECMO — extracorporeal membrane oxygenation
ED — emergency department
FDP — fibrin degradation product
FRC — functional residual capacity
GFR — glomerular filtration rate
IO — intraosseous
IVC — inferior vena cava
LPS — leukopolysaccharide
MODS — multiple organ dysfunction syndrome
MOSF — multiple organ system failure
PEEP — positive end-expiratory pressure
PIP — peak inspiratory failure
RSI — rapid sequence induction
SIRS — systemic inflammatory response syndrome
SVC — superior vena cava
VALI — ventilator-associated lung injury
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