National guidelines articulate a reliance on physical examination and patient history for diagnosis of asthma and bronchiolitis in the pediatric population. Multiple studies have established limited clinical utility of chest radiographs for patients with asthma or bronchiolitis. Omission of the use of chest radiography will reduce costs, but not compromise diagnostic accuracy and care.
Society of Hospital Medicine – Pediatric Hospital Medicine
Five Things Physicians and Patients Should QuestionDownload PDF
Published guidelines do not advocate the routine use of bronchodilators in patients with bronchiolitis. Comprehensive reviews of the literature have demonstrated that the use of bronchodilators in children admitted to the hospital with bronchiolitis has no effect on any important outcomes. There is limited demonstration of clear impact of bronchodilator therapy upon the course of disease. Additionally, providers should consider the potential impact of adverse events upon the patient.
Published guidelines recommend that corticosteroid medications not be used routinely in the management of bronchiolitis. Furthermore, additional studies in patients with other viral lower respiratory tract infections have failed to demonstrate any benefits.
Antireflux therapy has been demonstrated to have no effect in reducing the symptoms of grastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) in children. Concerns regarding the use of proton-pump inhibitor therapy in infants include an inability to definitively diagnose pediatric patients according to the established criteria of GERD, lack of documented efficacy of acid suppression therapy in infants and the potential adverse effects associated with acid suppression therapy.
The utility of continuous pulse oximetry in pediatric patients with acute respiratory illness is not well established. Use of continuous pulse oximetry has been previously associated with increased admission rates and increased length of stay. The clinical benefit of pulse oximetry is not validated or well documented.
Representing the fastest growing specialty in modern healthcare, the Society of Hospital Medicine (SHM) is the leading medical society for more than 34,000 hospitalists and their patients. SHM is dedicated to promoting the highest quality care for all hospitalized patients and overall excellence in the practice of hospital medicine through quality improvement, education, advocacy and research. Over the past decade, studies have shown that hospitalists can contribute to decreased patient lengths of stay, reductions in hospital costs and readmission rates, and increased patient satisfaction.
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How this list was created: A Delphi panel of pediatric hospital medicine physicians with wide geographic representation was convened by the Society of Hospital Medicine (SHM). The panel developed an initial list of 20 items with input from colleagues at each of the panelists’ home institutions, which was then discussed and reduced to 11 items via consensus of the panel. A comprehensive literature review was undertaken for these 11 items, while they were concurrently circulated on the electronic listservs of SHM’s Pediatric Committee and the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Section on Hospital Medicine. The collated comments along with the results of the evidence review were then presented to the members of the panel.
Two rounds of Delphi voting took place via electronic submission of votes by the panel. Validity and feasibility of each item was assessed by the Delphi panel on a nine-point scale for each of the 11 items and the mean of each item was obtained. The aggregate score of the means of validity and feasibility decided the final five items. These recommendations were then submitted to the SHM Board for review and approval.
SHM’s disclosure and conflict of interest policy can be found at www.hospitalmedicine.org/industry.
National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, National Asthma Education and Prevention Program. Expert panel report 3: Guidelines for the diagnosis and management of asthma. Bethesda (MD): National Institutes of Health; 2007 Aug. 417 p. Report No.:07-4051.
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