JOURNAL ARTICLE

Prodromal illness before acute chest syndrome in pediatric patients with sickle cell disease

Susan E Creary, Lakshmanan Krishnamurti
Journal of Pediatric Hematology/oncology 2014, 36 (6): 480-3
24633302

BACKGROUND: Acute chest syndrome (ACS) is associated with morbidity and mortality in children with sickle cell disease. We hypothesize that children with sickle cell disease have a distinct prodromal illness before their ACS episode.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: We performed a chart review of ICD-9-CM identified ACS episodes at a pediatric hospital from 2005 to 2010. Prodromal visits were defined as acute visits that resulted in a discharge from care and occurred within 2 weeks of a hospitalization that included ACS. We reviewed the documented history, examination, laboratory studies, and radiographs for each prodromal visit.

RESULTS: We identified 196 ACS episodes. Children received prodromal care in 29% of the ACS episodes. Painful vaso-occlusive crisis was a common reason for seeking this care (61%) and was commonly located in the chest or back (81%). We also observed that patients were hypoxic (53%), tachypneic (29%), had a history of asthma (39%) or ACS (80%), and presented during the winter months (38%).

CONCLUSIONS: These data suggest that nearly one third of patients who develop ACS seek care for a prodromal illness. Further research is needed to confirm and better define an ACS prodromal illness that may help to identify patients at high risk for developing ACS.

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