alexa Common Presenting Problems for Young People Attending the Emergency Department
Medicine

Medicine

Emergency Medicine: Open Access

Author(s): Dhurgshaarna Shanmugavadivel

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Objective. To determine the common presenting problems for young people attending the emergency department. Design. A retrospective review of electronic patient records of all young people between the ages of 13 and 17 who attended a UK University Hospital ED between 07/02/2007 and 06/02/2008 (). Results. All emergency department attendances for young people over a one-year period were studied in order to determine the common presenting problems. There were a total of 10455 attendances by 8303 young people. The presenting problem in 7505 (71.8%) was classified as injury. Of the remainder the commonest presenting problems reported for young people were abdominal pain (480, 16.3%), self-harm (314, 10.6%), fits, faints and funny turns (308, 10.4%), breathing difficulty (213, 7.2%), and intoxication (178, 6.0%). Ten presenting problems accounted for 72% of noninjury related attendances. Conclusions. Clinical guidelines and pathways developed for young people attending the emergency department should target the commonest presenting problems. In our cohort ten presenting problems account for almost three-quarters of all noninjury attendances for young people. The presenting problems are different to those described in younger children in previous studies. These results will inform the development of clinical pathways in order to improve emergency care.

This article was published in Advances in Emergency Medicine and referenced in Emergency Medicine: Open Access

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