In this study, investigators from the United States estimated the main gastrointestinal (GI) diagnoses associated with hospital utilization. They also described national hospital utilization patterns associated with pediatric GI disorders.
The team analyzed a nationwide sample of 1.9 million hospital discharges of children 18 years and younger. This was weighted to 6.7 million discharges nationally.
The investigators used Clinical Classification Software and Major Diagnostic Categories to identify the major GI diagnoses.
The team found that there were 329,825 pediatric discharges associated with a principal GI diagnosis in 1997. This accounted for more than $2.6 billion in hospital charges and more than 1.1 million hospital days.
|GI disorders were the third leading cause of hospitalization.|
|Journal of Pediatrics|
Appendicitis, intestinal infection, noninfectious gastroenteritis, abdominal pain, esophageal disorders, and digestive congenital anomalies accounted for 75% of GI discharge diagnoses, 64% of GI hospital charges, and 68% of GI hospital days.
The team established that GI disorders were the third leading cause of hospitalization.
Dr Stephen Guthery and colleagues concluded, "GI disorders are a leading cause of hospitalization of children".
"A minority of GI conditions account for the majority of measures of utilization".
"Children are hospitalized for GI conditions and at institutions that are distinct from adults".