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Most Common Risk Stratification Criteria for Management of Febrile Young Infants July 18, 2019

Posted by Andy Jagoda, MD in : Feature Update , add a comment

Due to an immature immune system and pathogens often specific to the age group, the young infant (generally aged < 60-90 days, depending on the specific study or review) is at high risk for serious bacterial infections (SBIs); in particular, urinary tract infection (UTI), bacteremia, and bacterial meningitis. Consequently, the febrile young infant with a rectal temperature ≥ 38°C (100.4°F) is commonly encountered in the emergency department (ED). The incidence of SBI in febrile infants aged < 90 days is 8% to 12.5%, and it is nearly 20% in neonates (aged ≤ 28 days). The incidence of potentially life-threatening bacteremia and/or bacterial meningitis (ie, invasive bacterial infection [IBI]) is approximately 2%.

Due to their lack of social responsiveness (eg, social smile) and verbal cues, even well-appearing febrile young infants may harbor an SBI, in contrast to well-appearing febrile older infants and children who are at lower risk for IBI. Multiple studies have demonstrated that both observation scales and clinician suspicion for SBI are poorly predictive of bacterial infection in febrile infants. Additionally, bacterial meningitis is the most common diagnosis involved in pediatric medical malpractice claims in the emergency department (ED).

Over 2 decades ago, several risk stratification criteria were created to identify febrile young infants at low risk for SBI, and the criteria have been utilized to potentially avoid hospitalization of certain low-risk patients. More recently, newer risk stratification algorithms that incorporate biomarkers such as procalcitonin (PCT) and C-reactive protein (CRP) have been developed and validated in febrile infants.

Among well-appearing febrile infants, neonates have the highest prevalence of SBI and IBI and the least reliable clinical examination. These infants should undergo a full sepsis evaluation, including CSF testing. While the Rochester criteria and the recently published PECARN prediction rule do not include routine CSF testing in this age group (see table below), infants classified as low-risk by any criteria may still have bacterial meningitis, so CSF testing is generally recommended for all infants aged ≤ 28 days. Consideration should be given to testing for HSV in the neonate aged ≤ 21 days, even in the absence of vesicles or maternal history of HSV infection.

This table will help you predict the risk stratification criteria for management of febrile young infants. Download now.

Table 4. Most Common Risk Stratification Criteria for Management of Febrile Young Infants

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Brain Teaser: What is the appropriate management of this infant? July 17, 2019

Posted by Andy Jagoda, MD in : Brain Tease , 1 comment so far

Test your knowledge and see how much you know about management and treatment of young infants presenting with fever.

Did you get it right? Click here to find out!

The correct answer: C.


Review this Pediatric Emergency Medicine Practice issue to get up-to-date on novel diagnostic tools such as procalcitonin, C-reactive protein, and RNA biosignatures as well as new risk stratification tools such as the Step-by-Step approach and the Pediatric Emergency Care Applied Research Network prediction rule to determine which febrile young infants require a full sepsis workup and to guide the management of these patients in the emergency department.

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A 2-year-old girl with upper respiratory infection symptoms — Brain Teaser. Do you know the answer? April 18, 2019

Posted by Andy Jagoda, MD in : Brain Tease , 1 comment so far

Test your knowledge and see how much you know about diagnosing and managing pediatric community-acquired pneumonia.


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The correct answer: B.

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Clinical Pathway for Management of Sexually Transmitted Diseases in the Emergency Department April 15, 2019

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Sexually transmitted disease can cause severe outcomes for patients, their partners, and their unborn babies, and swift and accurate diagnosis and treatment is essential to reduce morbidity and minimize the potential public health risks.

Sexually transmitted diseases are a growing threat to public health, but are often underrecognized, due to the often nonspecific (or absent) signs and symptoms, the myriad diseases, and the possibility of co-infection. Emergency clinicians play a critical role in improving healthcare outcomes for both patients and their partners. Optimizing the history and physical examination, ordering appropriate testing, and prescribing antimicrobial therapies, when required, will improve outcomes for men, women, and pregnant women and their babies.

This clinical pathway will help you improve care in the management of patients with sexually transmitted diseases. Download now.

Clinical Pathway for Management of Sexually Transmitted Diseases in the Emergency Department

Clinical Pathway for Management of Pediatric Patients With Community-Acquired Pneumonia April 15, 2019

Posted by Andy Jagoda, MD in : Feature Update , add a comment

A significant challenge in the management of pediatric community-acquired pneumonia is identifying children who are more likely to have bacterial pneumonia and will benefit from antibiotic therapy while avoiding unnecessary testing and treatment in children who have viral pneumonia.

Worldwide, pneumonia is the most common cause of death in children aged < 5 years. Distinguishing viral from bacterial causes of pneumonia is paramount to providing effective treatment but remains a significant challenge. For patients who can be managed with outpatient treatment, the utility of laboratory tests and radiographic studies, as well as the need for empiric antibiotics, remains questionable.

Clinical Pathway for Management of Pediatric Patients With Community-Acquired Pneumonia

This clinical pathway will help you improve care in the management of pediatric patients with community-acquired pneumonia. Click here to download yours today.

15-year-old girl presents with irregular periods — Brain Teaser. Do you know the answer? February 26, 2019

Posted by Andy Jagoda, MD in : Brain Tease , 3comments

Test your knowledge and see how much you know about treating and managing adolescent gynecologic emergencies.


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The correct answer: A.

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Clinical Pathway for Emergency Department Management of Abnormal Uterine Bleeding in Adolescent Patients February 18, 2019

Posted by Andy Jagoda, MD in : Feature Update , 1 comment so far

In the emergency department, gynecologic complaints are common presentations for adolescent girls, who may present with abdominal pain, pelvic pain, vaginal discharge, and vaginal bleeding. The differential diagnosis for these presentations is broad, and further complicated by psychosocial factors, confidentiality concerns, and the need to recognize abuse and sexual assault.

This clinical pathway will help you improve care in the management of abnormal uterine bleeding in adolescent patients. Download now.

Clinical Pathway for Emergency Department Management of Abnormal Uterine Bleeding in Adolescent Patients

Adolescent Gynecologic Emergencies. What do you do? February 14, 2019

Posted by Andy Jagoda, MD in : What's Your Diagnosis , 1 comment so far

You are then called to the resuscitation room for a 17-year-old girl who was found unresponsive at home. On examination, she is ill-appearing, lethargic, has cool distal extremities, normal heart sounds, and clear lungs, and her abdomen is soft but tender in the left lower quadrant. Her vital signs are: blood pressure, 80/40 mm Hg; heart rate, 130 beats/min; respiratory rate, 25 breaths/min; and oxygen saturation, 95% on room air. What are the immediate first steps in managing this patient? What testing is needed for evaluation and management? What is the appropriate disposition?

Case Conclusion:
The 17-year-old girl presented in shock. IV access was obtained quickly for fluid resuscitation. Bedside abdominal ultrasound revealed free fluid on the suprapubic view. The following laboratory tests were sent: hCG, CBC, complete metabolic panel, type and screen, and blood culture. Her hCG resulted positive, raising concern for ectopic pregnancy. After she was resuscitated, gynecology was consulted and noted an empty uterus and free peritoneal fluid on ultrasound, in spite of a serum hCG of 10,000 mIU/mL. The patient was quickly transferred to the operating room where an ectopic pregnancy complicated by hemoperitoneum was found.

Would you have done it different? Tell us how you would have handled this case.

A 12-year-old boy presents to the ED with a flulike illness — Brain Teaser. Do you know the answer? December 26, 2018

Posted by Andy Jagoda, MD in : Brain Tease , 1 comment so far

Test your knowledge and see how much you know about treating and managing suspected bioterrorism in pediatric patients.


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The correct answer: A.

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Using chemoprophylaxis in a child aged 1 year — Brain Teaser. Do you know the answer? December 24, 2018

Posted by Andy Jagoda, MD in : Brain Tease , add a comment

Test your knowledge and see how much you know about treating and managing influenza in the ED.


Did you get it right? Click here to find out!

The correct answer: A.

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Last Modified: 08-25-2019
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