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• Hackbarth RM, Rzeszutko KM, Sturm G, Donders J, Kuldanek AS and Sanfilippo DJ (2002). Survival and functional outcome in pediatric traumatic brain injury: a retrospective review and analysis of predictive factors. Crit Care Med. 30 (7): 1630-5. Summary: OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to evaluate the relationship of patient care variables to survival and functional outcome in the pediatric population with traumatic brain injury. DESIGN: Retrospective chart review. SETTING: A 16-bed pediatric critical care unit in an academic community children's hospital. PATIENTS: A total of 320 consecutive pediatric patients with traumatic brain injuries admitted to our pediatric critical care unit between 1992 and 1996. INTERVENTIONS: Patients were managed using our standard traumatic brain injury protocol. MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS: A total of 230 patient variables encompassing demographic data, prehospital, emergency department, and pediatric critical care unit care were recorded. A total of 79 patients were severely injured, with admitting Glasgow Coma Scale scores of < or =10. There were 18 deaths. Only two patients survived without cognition. Ninety-five of 302 survivors required inpatient rehabilitation. Of these, 73 were old enough to be compared using FIMTM scores. At the time of discharge from rehabilitation, 52 patients [71%) were functioning independently, 20 [27%) were moderately dependent, and one patient was completely dependent. Analysis of variables with respect to survival revealed that an inability to maintain a cerebral perfusion pressure of > or =50 mm Hg on the first pediatric critical care unit day (p =.0002) and the presence of bradycardia in the emergency department (p =.0139) were the strongest factors associated with mortality. By using the regression equation generated from this model, we could correctly identify survivors and nonsurvivors with a predictive value of 94%. CONCLUSIONS: The ability to maintain a cerebral perfusion pressure of > or =50 mm Hg was the single most important predictor of traumatic brain injury survival in this study. This suggests that monitoring and optimizing cerebral perfusion pressure is critical to the management of these patients. The relationship between cognitive outcome and therapeutic interventions used to optimize cerebral perfusion pressure is unclear and requires further evaluation in a large prospective study. Pediatric Critical Care Unit, DeVos Children's Hospital at Spectrum Health, Grand Rapids, MI 49503-2560, USA. email@example.com.