Prompt anti-influenza medication shortens hospital stay in children with tracheostomy
Early administration of anti-influenza medications in children with tracheostomy cuts the length of stay in the hospital by a day, although these children continue to receive antibiotics even after detection and treatment of their viral infections, a study has shown.
The study included 899 paediatric patients aged 30 days to 19 years who had been admitted for tracheostomy and influenza infection (median age at admission, 5 years; 56.5 percent male) and were successfully discharged.
In the cohort, 513 patients received anti-influenza medications on hospital day 0 or 1 (anti-influenza group) while the 386 did not (nonmedicated controls). Most of these patients had multiple complex chronic conditions (median, 3) and technology dependence, such as gastrostomy tube (73.6 percent).
A total of 772 patients were matched by propensity score, with 386 patients each in the anti-influenza and nonmedicated groups. The primary endpoint of length of hospital stay was shorter in the group that received anti-influenza medications (6.4 vs 7.5 days; p=0.01). Revisit rates did not differ significantly (27.5 percent vs 24.1 percent; p=0.28).
The majority of patients in both groups (>80 percent) received empirical antibiotics, and the duration of antibiotic therapy was comparable (5.0 vs 5.6 days; p=0.11).
Findings of the present study support the recommendation of prompt administration of anti-influenza medications in all children hospitalized with influenza, as well as provide insight into antibiotic prescribing behaviour regarding children with tracheostomy hospitalized with viral respiratory tract infections, researchers said.
When managing children with medical complexity, adherence to current influenza treatment guidelines in the inpatient setting is especially important given the present challenges in providing effective influenza prevention and increased risk of hospitalization, they added.