Children with neurologic disorders are at 5- to 7-fold greater risk for hospitalization from respiratory infections compared with all children, although rates vary widely by disorder type, age, and comorbidities. Children with specific neurologic disorders and those who had co-occurring conditions have the highest rates.
We analyzed claims data from commercial insurance and Medicaid enrollees < 19 years of age from July 2006 to June 2011 who had ≥ 1 visit with an International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, diagnosis code for a neurologic disorder. We identified hospitalizations with primary diagnosis codes indicating a respiratory infection and compared hospitalization rates with random samples of children from the commercial and Medicaid databases (comparison groups).
Among 33,651923 children, 255,046 (0.76%) had ≥ 1 neurologic condition. Among children with neurologic conditions, 8249 of 68,717 hospitalizations (12%) were attributed to a respiratory infection (rate: 21/1000 person-years), although rates varied by disorder. Children with neurologic disorders had greater rates than children in comparison groups (relative rate: Commercial Claims 7.4 [95% CI 7.1-7.7]; Medicaid 5.0 [95% CI 4.8-5.2]). Children < 2 years were most likely to be hospitalized, although those 10-18 years were 14.5 (95% CI 13.3-16.7) times more likely to be hospitalized than age-matched comparison groups. Co-occurring deafness, blindness, and scoliosis were associated with increased respiratory hospitalization rates.
To characterize respiratory infection hospitalizations in children with neurologic disorders and to compare them with those of the general pediatric population.