Child asthma hospitalization rates decrease, but occurrence rates increase

August 15, 2008

The number of children admitted to hospitals for asthma has dropped, but the number of children admitted for other conditions who also had asthma increased, reports the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

The number of children admitted to hospitals for asthma has dropped, but the number of children admitted for other conditions who also had asthma increased, reported the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

Hospitalizations of children principally for asthma fell by almost 60,000 between 1997 and 2006, results showed. In 2006, this amounted to 137,000 cases of children admitted specifically for asthma. The number of children admitted to hospitals for other conditions who also had asthma rose by nearly 70,000 between 1997 and 2006, amounting to 197,000 cases in 2006. The primary illness, such as pneumonia or bronchitis, was often directly related to asthma.

Other findings included that infants younger than 1 year were four times more likely to be hospitalized for asthma than children ages 15 to 17, and roughly 27% of all children admitted for pneumonia also had asthma. Of children hospitalized for acute bronchitis, 9% had asthma, and 5% of children hospitalized for depression or bipolar disease also had asthma.

The full report can be accessed here.