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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Korean J Pediatr 2016 May;59(5) :212-217.
Published online 2016 May 15.       
Clinical features and prognostic factors in drowning children: a regional experience
Kyung Lae Son1, Su Kyeong Hwang2, Hee Joung Choi1
1Department of Pediatrics, Keimyung University School of Medicine, Daegu, Korea
2Department of Pediatrics, Kyungpook National University School of Medicine, Daegu, Korea
Corresponding Author: Hee Joung Choi ,Tel: +82-53-250-7524, Fax: +82-53-250-7783, Email: joung756@dsmc.or.kr
Copyright © 2016 by The Korean Pediatric Society
ABSTRACT
Purpose: This study aimed to evaluate the clinical features of children who have survived a water submersion incident, and to identify risk factors for prognosis.
Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the medical records of patients who experienced submersion between January 2005 and December 2014. The patients were classified into 2 groups, according to complications, and prognostic factors were evaluated.
Results: During the study period, 29 children experienced submersion (20 boys and 9 girls; mean age, 83.846.4 months). Submersion occurred most commonly in the summer, with the peak incidence in August. The most frequent Szpilman clinical score was grade 5 (13 patients; 44.8%), followed by grade 6 (7 patients; 24.1%), and grades 1 or 2 (3 patients; 10.3%). Five children (17.2%) in the poor prognosis group died or had hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy, and the overall mortality rate was 6.9%. Poor prognosis after submersion was associated with lower consciousness levels (P=0.003), higher Szpilman scores (P=0.007), greater need for intubation and mechanical ventilator support (P=0.001), and longer duration of oxygen therapy (P=0.015). Poor prognosis was also associated with lower bicarbonate levels (P=0.038), as well as higher sodium, aspartate transaminase (AST), and alanine transaminase (ALT) levels (P=0.034, P=0.006, and P=0.005, respectively). Szpilman clinical scores were positively correlated with consciousness levels (r=0.489, P=0.002) and serum liver enzyme levels (AST and ALT; r=0.521, P=0.004).
Conclusion: We characterized the prognostic factors associated with submersion outcomes, using the Szpilman clinical score, which is comparable to consciousness level for predicting mortality.
Keywords: Drowning | Child | Prognosis
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