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Incidence, Risk Factors and Outcome of Perioperative Hypothermia in Pediatric Patients at the University Teaching Hospital of Kigali

Authors: J. C. Uwimana; J. B. Uwineza; F. Nizeyimana; D. Nekyon


Introduction: To maintain normal temperature in pediatric patients is problematic. Patients who develop perioperative Hypothermia, are prone to severe complications, including impaired wound healing, postoperative infections and prolonged hospital stay.
Study Aims: This study aimed to determine the incidence of perioperative Hypothermia, factors associated with intraoperative Hypothermia, and the outcome of perioperative Hypothermia in pediatric patients operated at CHUK.

Methods: A prospective observational study was conducted. All pediatric patients undergoing surgery under general anesthesia in theatre between June 2018 and August 2018 were eligible for the study. The temperature was taken on arrival in theatre, immediately after induction of anesthesia, then after every hour until the procedure finished. The postoperative temperature was taken every 30 minutes up to two hours, considering that patients stay in the postoperative care unit for 1-2 hours. Logistic regression was used to test each factor with the dependent variable and variables were carried to multivariate analysis. A P-value of <0.05 was a cut-off point to test for the significance of associations.

Results: 103 pediatric patients were enrolled in the study, of whom 28 females and 75 males. Incidences of preoperative, intraoperative and postoperative Hypothermia were 67%, 71.7% and 67.7%, respectively. Female patients, general anesthesia, elective surgery, not using a warmer perioperatively and low operating room temperature were associated with intraoperative Hypothermia. Hypothermic patients had longer PACU stay compared to normothermic patients.

Conclusion: Perioperative Hypothermia is common at CHUK. Warming patients and management of operating room temperature should be done during anesthesia and in PACU.