The purpose of this study was to identify the patterns of use of sedative agents and withdrawal problems in the paediatric intensive care unit (PICU). A questionnaire survey was mailed to 46 Danish intensive care units. Only 24 of these treated paediatric patients needing mechanical ventilation. The agents most frequently employed were morphine and midazolam. There was general satisfaction with the used drugs. The majority of departments noted that there was no protocol for sedation in their PICU. The majority of departments (70.8%) did not consider drug withdrawal to be a problem, but those departments who treated most children considered drug withdrawal to be a problem.