Identification of Low Cardiac Output Syndrome at the Bedside: A Pediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Unit Survey

Author(s): Matthew J. Nordness, BSN, RN, Ashly C. Westrick, MPH, Heidi Chen, PhD, Mark A. Clay, MD

Contact Hours 1.00

CERP A 1.00

Expires Apr 30, 2024

Topics: Cardiovascular, Hemodynamics

Population: Pediatric, Neonatal

Role: Staff

Member: Free
NonMember: $10.00

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Activity Summary

Required reading for all learners: Implicit Bias impacts patient outcomes

Low cardiac output syndrome (LCOS) is a transient constellation of signs and symptoms indicating the inability of the heart to deliver sufficient oxygen to tissues and end organs to meet metabolic demand. This article reviews the current clinical definition of LCOS and how clinical nurses apply that clinical definition in assessing patients in pediatric cardiac intensive care units. In addition, challenges and pitfalls which nurses face in their determination of whether a patient does or does not have LCOS after corrective or palliative cardiac surgery are discussed.


  • Review current literature and clinical diagnostic criteria for low cardiac output syndrome (LCOS) in pediatric patients.
  • Analyze concordance of LCOS diagnosis among pediatric cardiac intensive care nurses at a tertiary referral pediatric center.
  • Identify low cardiac output syndrome in pediatric patients after palliative or corrective cardiac surgery.

Continuing Education Disclosure Statement

Successful Completion

Learners must attend/view/read the entire activity and complete the associated evaluation to be awarded the contact hours or CERP. No partial credit will be awarded.


This activity has been reviewed by the Nurse Planner. It has been determined that the material presented here shows no bias. No conflicts of interest have been identified for any individual with the ability to influence the content of this activity. Accreditation refers to recognition of continuing education only and does not imply AACN or ANCC approval or endorsement of any commercial products discussed or displayed in conjunction with this educational activity.


The American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN) is accredited as a provider of nursing continuing professional development by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's (ANCC's) Commission on Accreditation, ANCC Provider Number 0012. AACN has been approved as a provider of continuing education in nursing by the California State Board of Nursing (CBRN), California Provider number CEP 1036. This activity is approved for 1.00 contact hours.

AACN programming meets the standards for most states that require mandatory continuing education contact hours for license and/or certification renewal. AACN recommends consulting with your state board of nursing or credentialing organization before submitting CE to fulfill continuing education requirements.

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