OBJECTIVES: Unlike community-acquired pneumonia (CAP), there is a paucity of data characterizing the patient demographics and hospitalization characteristics of children with aspiration pneumonia. We used a large national database of US children’s hospitals to assess the patient and hospitalization characteristics associated with aspiration pneumonia and compared these characteristics to patients with CAP.
METHODS: We identified children hospitalized with a diagnosis of aspiration pneumonia or CAP at 47 hospitals included in the Pediatric Health Information System between 2009 and 2014. We evaluated whether differences exist in patient characteristics (median age and proportion of patients with a complex chronic condition), and hospital characteristics (length of stay, ICU admission, cost, and 30-day readmission rate) between children with aspiration pneumonia and CAP. Lastly, we assessed whether seasonal variability exists within these 2 conditions.
RESULTS: Over the 6-year study period, there were 12 097 children hospitalized with aspiration pneumonia, and 121 489 with CAP. Compared with children with CAP, children with aspiration pneumonia were slightly younger and more likely to have an associated complex chronic condition. Those with aspiration pneumonia had longer hospitalizations, higher rates of ICU admission, and higher 30-day readmission rates. Additionally, the median cost for hospitalization was 2.4 times higher for children with aspiration pneumonia than for children with CAP. More seasonal variation was observed for CAP compared with aspiration pneumonia hospitalizations.
CONCLUSIONS: Aspiration pneumonia preferentially affects children with medical complexity and, as such, accounts for longer and more costly hospitalizations and higher rates of ICU admission and readmission rates.
- Copyright © 2016 by the American Academy of Pediatrics