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Scenario Decision-Making About Plasma and Platelet Transfusion for Intracranial Monitor Placement: Cross-Sectional Survey of Pediatric Intensivists and Neurosurgeons.

OBJECTIVES: To report pediatric intensivists' and pediatric neurosurgeons' responses to case-based scenarios about plasma and platelet transfusions before intracranial pressure (ICP) monitor placement in children with severe traumatic brain injury (TBI).

DESIGN: Cross-sectional, electronic survey to evaluate reported plasma and platelet transfusion decisions in eight scenarios of TBI in which ICP monitor placement was indicated.

SETTING: Survey administered through the Pediatric Acute Lung Injury and Sepsis Investigators and the American Association of Neurologic Surgeons.

SUBJECTS: Pediatric intensivists and pediatric neurosurgeons.


MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS: A total of 184 participants responded (85 identified as pediatric intensivists and 54 as pediatric neurosurgeons). In all eight scenarios, the majority of respondents reported that they would base their decision-making about plasma transfusion on international normalized ratio (INR) alone (60-69%), or platelet transfusion on platelet count alone (83-86%). Pediatric intensivists, as opposed to pediatric neurosurgeons, more frequently reported that they would have used viscoelastic testing in their consideration of plasma transfusion (32% vs. 7%, p < 0.001), as well as to guide platelet transfusions (29 vs. 8%, p < 0.001), for the case-based scenarios. For all relevant case-based scenarios, pediatric neurosurgeons in comparison with pediatric reported that they would use a lower median (interquartile range [IQR]) INR threshold for plasma transfusion (1.5 [IQR 1.4-1.7] vs. 2.0 [IQR 1.5-2.0], p < 0.001). Overall, in all respondents, the reported median platelet count threshold for platelet transfusion in the case-based scenario was 100 (IQR 50-100) ×109/L, with no difference between specialties.

CONCLUSIONS: Despite little evidence showing efficacy, when we tested specialists' decision-making, we found that they reported using INR and platelet count in pediatric case-based scenarios of TBI undergoing ICP monitor placement. We also found that pediatric intensivists and pediatric neurosurgeons had differences in decision-making about the scenarios.

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