Effectiveness of 3% saline versus mannitol in children with cerebral oedema of non traumatic etiology

Kumaraguru D, Poovazhagi Varadarajan, Shanthi Sangareddi, Ramachandran Padmanabhan, Jeyachandran P
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Objective: A randomized controlled trial was undertaken at the pediatric intensive care department of a tertiary care Pediatric hospital at Chennai, to evaluate the effectiveness of 3% saline as an anti-edema measure in comparison to mannitol in children with non-traumatic coma. Subjects: The study comprised of 40 children with cerebral edema in each group. Outcome measures: The outcome was analyzed in terms of survival/death, duration of coma and complications. Results: Study parameters like age, gender, Glasgow coma scale, etiology of coma, signs of cerebral edema and duration of coma were comparable among the two groups and did not reveal statistically significant difference. Among the complications shock(p- 0.03) and dehydration (p-0.045) were more common in children who received mannitol and hypernatremia(p-0.026) was common in children who received 3% saline. The mortality rates among the two groups did not reveal statistically significant difference(p-0.07). Conclusions: In the treatment of cerebral edema of non traumatic origin in children, 3% saline can be considered as effective and safe as mannitol.


Mannitol, 3% saline, cerebral edema

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