The American Heart Association has developed one of the greatest pediatric advanced life support saving programs ever in the history of emergency medicine. They have identified the major causes for children that developed sudden cardiac arrest. As a result, the PALS certification has become mandatory throughout the medical community. Those who work in the acute care setting have used many of the pediatric advanced life support algorithms with great success.
The program consists of a two-day course which incorporates the use of intubation as well as advanced cardiac life support medications. The emphasis of the program are certification course stresses the need for early oxygenation as well as assisted ventilation as needed. Most kids that are or near cardiac arrest will benefit from hyper oxygenation as well as assisted ventilation on an as needed basis. The build up of carbon dioxide or CO2 makes the pediatric patients susceptible to death.
In addition, the American Heart Association pediatric advanced life support instructors also emphasized the need for excellent fluid resuscitation. Children have become hypovolemic will also develop metabolic acidosis due to the lack of oxygenation that is being delivered to the outlying tissues. Many of these patients will also have a condition known as septicemia. The PALS course will help identify many of these individuals who present with hypovolemia.
Those medical professionals who choose to take the PALS certification course should purchase their materials from an accredited vendor endorsed by the American Heart Association. There are many publishers who claim to have the new pediatric advanced life support algorithms, but more often than not they are incorrect. They have not been given the permission to reprint the material word for word verbatim. Therefore, be sure to purchase the real pediatric advanced life support provider manual.
Pediatric patients who present with fever and chills should also be suspected to have an infection. These patients will also require antibiotics as well as respiratory and fluid resuscitation. Kids that have pre-existing medical conditions can exacerbate their infection as well as their dehydration condition. The fluid of choice is 0.9% normal saline and sodium chloride.
If a child is in a bradycardia cardiac rhythm, oxygen should be used to increase their oxygenation and in addition you may also choose to give the endogenous catecholamine epinephrine. The amount that you give is .01 mg per kilogram of a 1 to 10,000 solution. However, you may also elect to deliver the medication down the endotracheal tube and you must give .01 mL per kilogram of a 1 to 1000 solution. This medication will help to elevate the contractile force as well as the heart rate of the myocardium.
As a final note, anyone who’s involved in the medical community will greatly benefit from the pediatric advanced life support course offered by the American Heart Association. Everyone who participates in the course will receive a certification card upon successful completion. You must study well and prepare yourself for the course prior to attendance. Good luck to you all and I wish you all the success as you enter the emergency medical community.