Management of Hospitalized Asthmatic Children Before Transport

Brande Mazzeo, Rami Bzeih, Robert Schultz, Melissa Tavolieri, Alicia Fraser, Sabrina M. Heidemann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Asthmatic children are at risk for respiratory failure and should be appropriately treated before transport. The objectives were to find out if the Pediatric Advanced Life Support guidelines for asthma treatment were followed in the emergency department (ED); to determine if additional treatment during transport or within the first 2 hours of admission was needed; and to compare the management of intubated asthmatics by the ED, transport team, and the intensive care unit (ICU) physician. The records for children diagnosed with acute asthma over 7 years who were transported by the intensive care transport team were reviewed. The use of albuterol, steroids, oxygen, heliox, continuous positive airway pressure or bilevel positive airway pressure, and ventilator settings was recorded. Two hundred seventy-nine children were 7 years (age, 5 mo-17 y), and 62% were male. Eighty percent received oxygen, albuterol, and steroids in the ED. Heliox was initiated more often by the transport team when compared with the ED or hospital physician (77% vs. 7.7% vs. 15.3%, P < .0001). Forty-five were mechanically ventilated and were more likely to receive volume control (P < .0001) and higher rates (P = .007) in the ED than the ICU. We conclude that most children with acute asthma were treated with oxygen, albuterol, and steroids in the ED. If used, heliox was most likely started during transport. Intubated children were more likely to receive volume control with higher rates compared with lower rates and pressure control in the ICU.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)30-33
Number of pages4
JournalAir Medical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017


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