Skip to main content

UC Davis Health System

Robert K. Pretzlaff, M.D., M.B.A. View profile as PDF

Robert K. Pretzlaff

Philosophy of Care

The best care is delivered by listening to patients and their parents, and by providing care that understands the importance of teamwork to creating the best outcome possible. The hallmarks of the best care are quality and consistency.

Clinical Interests

Dr. Pretzlaff has a special clinical interest in the treatment of patients with severe cardiac or respiratory failure with extracorporeal life support, or ECLS.

Research/Academic Interests

Dr. Pretzlaff’s  academic interests are focused on communication and medical decision making in the intensive care environment, with a focus on improving quality and safety in the intensive care unit. A secondary academic interest is medical economics and the provision of health care at the level of the health system and nationally.


Chief, Pediatric Critical Care Medicine
Associate Director, UC Davis Medical Group


Pediatric Critical Care




Pediatric Critical Care

Center/Program Affiliation:


UC Davis Children's Hospital
2315 Stockton Blvd.
Sacramento, CA 95617
Driving Directions
Phone: 800-282-3284

Additional Phone:

Physician Referrals: 800-4-UCDAVIS (800-482-3284)

Other Languages:



M.D., Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, Michigan, 1991
M.B.A., California State University, Sacramento, California, 2012
B.A., Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan, 1985
M.S., Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan, 1987


University of Michigan Medical Center, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 1992


University of Michigan Medical Center, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 1994


Children's National Medical Center, Washington, D.C., 1997

Board Certifications:

American Board of Pediatrics, 1994
American Board of Pediatrics, Critical Care Medicine, 1997

Professional Memberships:

Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Society
American Academy of Pediatrics
American Society of Bioethics and Humanities, past member
Beta Gamma Sigma - Business Honors Society
Society of Critical Care Medicine
Wayne State University School of Medicine Alumni

Select Honors and Awards:

Fellow, American Academy of Pediatrics, 2005

Best Basic Research Award, 3rd World Congress on Pediatric Intensive Care, 2000

Martha Franz Annual Resident Teaching Award, 1999

Alpha Omega Alpha, 1991

Dean’s Team Award for Excellence in Clinical Care, 2012

ELSO - Award of Excellence, 2012

Beta Gamma Sigma - Business Honors Society, 2012

UC Davis Medical Center Chief of Staff Award, 2008

Children’s Miracle Network Helping Hands Award, 2006

Elected Best Doctors in America, 2005

Select Recent Publications:

Nagle EL, Dager WE, Duby JJ, Roberts AJ, Kenny LE, Murthy MS, Pretzlaff RK. (2013) Bivalirudin in pediatric patients maintained on extracorporeal life support. Pediatr Crit Care Med 14(4) e182.

Moler FW, et al., (2011) Multi-center cohort study of out-of-hospital pediatric cardiac arrest. Crit Care Med 39(1): 141-149.

von Arx D, Pretzlaff R (2010) Improved nurse readiness through pediatric mock code training. J Pediatr Nurse 25(5): 438-440

Meert, K.L., et al., (2009) Multi-center cohort study of in-hospital pediatric cardiac arrest. Pediatr Crit Care Med, 10(5): 544-553.

Moler, F.W., et al., (2009) In-hospital versus out-of-hospital pediatric cardiac arrest: A multi-center cohort study*. Crit Care Med, 37(7) 2259-2267.

Irazuzta J, Pretzlaff RK, Zingarelli B. (2008) Caspases inhibition decreases neurological sequelae in meningitis. Crit Care Med 36(5) 1603-1606.

Pretzlaff RK (2012) Legal Considerations in Pediatric Critical Care. In Comprehensive Critical Care: Pediatric

Pretzlaff RK (2009) Dealing with Difficult Parents. In Current Concepts in Pediatric Critical Care.

Pretzlaff RK (2009) Moral Choice in Public Policy. In Encyclopedia of Medical Decision Making. Ed – M. Kattan

To see if Robert K. Pretzlaff is accepting new patients, or for assistance finding a UC Davis doctor, please call 800-2-UCDAVIS (800-282-3284).