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The Burden Of Visits For Fever At A Paediatric Emergency Room: A Retrospective Study On Patients Presenting At The Cantons Hospital Of Fribourg, A Peripheral Public Hospital Of Switzerland

Authors Piller S, Herzog D

Received 20 June 2019

Accepted for publication 23 October 2019

Published 15 November 2019 Volume 2019:10 Pages 147—152

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/PHMT.S219759

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Roosy Aulakh


Sarah Piller, Denise Herzog

Department of Paediatrics, Cantons Hospital of Fribourg, Fribourg, Switzerland

Correspondence: Denise Herzog
Department of Pediatrics, Cantons Hospital of Fribourg, Chemin Des Pensionnats 2-6, 1700, Fribourg, Switzerland
Tel +41 26 306 3510
Fax +41 26 306 3519
Email denise.herzog@h-fr.ch

Introduction: Fever is the chief complaint of up to one-third of all paediatric office visits in many places. The high number of consultations at our emergency department (ED) led us to hypothesise that this increase was due to febrile paediatric patients with lower urgency seeking medical advice.
Methods: We retrospectively analysed the number and characteristics of patients 3 months to 5 years of age consulting for a body temperature of 38.5°C or higher during the 6 winter months of 2011–2012.
Results: Twenty-four percent of all consultations were requested by the patients included in our group. None of the 835 patients had to be hospitalised, 95% of these patients had additional respiratory or gastrointestinal symptoms, 36.7% required antibiotic therapy, and 17.6% (laryngitis and lower respiratory tract infection (RTI)) required temporary respiratory support. A total of 56.2% of patients sought advice outside of the normal working hours.
Conclusion: The majority of patients had fever accompanied by additional symptoms justifying a medical consultation. However, most of these did not require the infrastructure of an ED for their health care problem and probably visited the ED because of the open hours.

Keywords: fever, emergency department, child, infection

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