Hospitalizations among persons with Down syndrome: a national cohort study in Denmark
Published Date:Feb 12 2013
Source:Am J Med Genet A. 0(4):650-657.
Funding:5 U10DD000230-06/DD/NCBDD CDC HHS/United States
AVU3/Intramural CDC HHS/United States
Most persons with Down syndrome (DS) now survive to adulthood, but their health care needs beyond childhood are not well described. We examined hospitalizations among persons with DS in Denmark.
We followed 3,212 persons with DS (1910-2007), identified from the Danish Cytogenetic Register, and a random sample of persons without DS from the general population (as comparison group), through the National Hospital Register from January 1, 1977, to May 31, 2008. Poisson regression was used to calculate rate ratios for numbers of overnight hospital admissions and hospital days.
During this time period, persons with DS had more than twice the rate of hospital admissions and nearly three times as many bed-days as the population as whole. Malformations, diseases of the respiratory system, and diseases of the nervous system or sensory organs were the principal indications for hospital admissions. The higher rate ratios for hospital admissions were mainly seen among persons less than 20 years of age, and hospitalization for neoplasms or for diseases of the musculoskeletal system or connective tissue was much less frequent than expected among adults with DS. Persons with DS who had congenital heart defects were far more likely to be hospitalized than those without.
Persons with DS in Denmark are hospitalized more frequently and for more days than persons without DS; however, hospitalization usage differs by age (with a higher burden at younger ages) and by presence of a congenital heart defect. As survival among persons with DS continues to improve, these data are helpful for health care planning, although results may be different within other health care systems.
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