OBJECTIVES: To describe asthma management, investigate practice variation, and describe asthma-associated charges and resource use during asthma management in the PICU.
METHODS: Children ages 2 to 18 years treated for status asthmaticus in the PICU from 2008 to 2011 are included in this study. This is a retrospective, single-center, cohort study. Data were collected by using the Intermountain Healthcare Enterprise Data Warehouse.
RESULTS: There were 262 patients included and grouped by maximal respiratory support intervention. Seventy percent of the patients did not receive escalation of respiratory support beyond nasal cannula or nonrebreather mask, and the majority of these patients received only first-tier recommended therapy. For all patients, medical imaging and laboratory charge fractions accounted for <3% and <5% of the total charges, respectively. Among nonintubated patients, the majority of these diagnostic test results were normal. Fifteen patients were intubated during our study period; 4 were intubated at our facility. Compared with outside hospital intubations, these 4 patients had longer time to intubation (>3 days versus <24 hours) and significantly longer median PICU length of stay (12.7 days versus 2.6 days).
CONCLUSIONS: In our study, the vast majority of patients with severe asthma were treated with minimal interventions alone (nasal cannula or nonrebreather mask and first-tier medications). Minimizing PICU length of stay is likely the most successful way to decrease expense during asthma care.
- Copyright © 2018 by the American Academy of Pediatrics