Practice Patterns and Outcomes for Pediatric Patients Hospitalized With Functional Constipation.


Dr Swati Bhave    23 January 2018

Constipation is a common pediatric condition with a prevalence range of 3%-5% among children aged from 4 to 17 years.

A study published in the Hospital Pediatrics evaluated practice patterns and patient outcomes for hospital management of functional constipation.

This was a multicenter, retrospective cohort study of children in the age-group of 0-18 years hospitalized for functional constipation, from 2012 to 2014, in a US childrens hospitals.

The results revealed that the overall percentage of hospitalizations due to functional constipation was 0.65%. Patients receiving electrolyte laxatives during their hospitalization were estimated to be 40-96%. While, up to 64% of the patients received sodium phosphate enema and up to 61% of the patients were given mineral oil enema. On the other hand, between 0% and 37% of the patients were administered glycerin suppository; 0% to 47% received bisacodyl; 0% to 23% received senna; and 0% to 11% were given docusate. The mean length of stay was 1.97 days and mean 90-day readmission rate was 3.78%.

From the findings, it was inferred that there is significant variation in practice patterns and clinical outcomes for pediatric patients hospitalized with functional constipation across US childrens hospitals. Nevertheless, a majority of these children are treated with electrolyte laxatives upon hospitalization.

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