Sepsis is one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality in the pediatric population worldwide. This study aimed to establish a correlation between platelet count and outcomes of severe sepsis/septic shock in pediatric patients.
This retrospective cohort study was conducted in the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) in a pediatric tertiary care medical hospital. Pediatric patients from newborns to 14-year-olds with a diagnosis of sepsis or septic shock who were admitted to the PICU between April 2015 and February 2018 were enrolled. Patients were classified into two groups based on the presence of thrombocytopenia: thrombocytopenia group (TG) with a platelet count 150,000/μL.
Overall, 206 children were enrolled, including 82 (39.8%) in the TG and 124 (60.2%) in the NTG. Thrombocytopenia was more common in patients with a negative bacterial blood culture (93.9%, P = 0.007). NTG was associated with a higher mortality rate (29%) than the TG (12.2%, P = 0.005). Multiorgan dysfunction syndrome (MODS) at the onset of sepsis (time zero) was found to be more prevalent in NTG than in TG (P = 0.001), while the progression of MODS over the three days remained the same in both groups.
Thrombocytopenia was more associated with non-bacterial sepsis/septic shock, and it may indicate a better outcome of sepsis in pediatric patients.

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