Journal Articles

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Drugs - Real World Outcomes


BACKGROUND: The reduction in adverse drug events is a priority in healthcare. Medications are frequently prescribed for asthmatic children, but epidemiological trends of adverse drug events related to anti-asthmatic medications have not been described in hospitalized children.

OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to report incidence trends, risk factors, and healthcare utilization of adverse drug events related to anti-asthmatic medications by major drug classes in hospitalized children in the USA from 2000 to 2016.

METHODS: A population-based temporal analysis included those aged 0-20 years who were hospitalized with asthma from the 2000 to 2016 Kids Inpatient Database. Age-stratified weighted temporal trends of the inpatient incidence of adverse drug events related to anti-asthmatic medications (i.e., corticosteroids and bronchodilators) were estimated. Stepwise multivariate logistic regression models generated risk factors for adverse drug events.

RESULTS: From 2000 to 2016, 12,640 out of 698,501 pediatric asthma discharges (1.7%) were associated with adverse drug events from anti-asthmatic medications. 0.83% were adverse drug events from corticosteroids, resulting in a 1.14-fold increase in the length of stay (days) and a 1.42-fold increase in hospitalization charges (dollars). The overall incidence (per 1000 discharges) of anti-asthmatic medication adverse drug events increased from 5.3 (95% confidence interval [CI] 4.6-6.1) in 2000 to 21.6 (95% CI 18.7-24.6) in 2016 (p-trend = 0.024). Children aged 0-4 years had the most dramatic increase in the incidence of bronchodilator adverse drug events from 0.2 (95% CI 0.1-0.4) to 19.3 (95% CI 15.2-23.4) [p-trend ≤ 0.001]. In general, discharges among asthmatic children with some comorbidities were associated with an approximately two to five times higher odds of adverse drug events.

CONCLUSIONS: The incidence of adverse drug events from common anti-asthmatic medications quadrupled over the past decade, particularly among preschool-age children who used bronchodilators, resulting in substantial increased healthcare costs. Those asthmatic children with complex medical conditions may benefit the most from adverse drug event monitoring.

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