Hospitalized neonatal iatrogenic events are prevalentSource: The Lancet 2008; Advance online publication
Identifying the epidemiological characteristics of iatrogenic events among neonates admitted to hospital.
MedWire News: Iatrogenic events are prevalent and often present a serious problem in hospitalized infants, particularly those of low birth weight, say French researchers who call for adjustments to neonatal care.
The researchers assessed the incidence of iatrogenic events among 388 neonates admitted to hospital, over a period of 10,436 patient days. In all, 267 iatrogenic events were recorded in 166 hospitalized neonates.
The prevalence of iatrogenic events was relatively high, at 25.6 per 1,000 patient days. Severe cases were observed among 29 percent of neonates, a significant proportion of which, at around 27 percent, were considered preventable.
The majority of neonates admitted for iatrogenic events developed cutaneous injuries, and around 76 percent were treated with the wrong drug dosage. Nosocomical infections and respiratory events also occurred frequently among those with iatrogenic events, at 79 and 35 percent, respectively.
Iatrogenic events correlated with low birth weight and gestational age. Hospital environmental factors were also significantly associated with neonatal iatrogenic damage, including long durations of stay, the administration of a central venous line, and mechanical ventilation support.
Umberto Simeoni (La Conception Hospital, Marseille, France) and co-workers conclude: "Improved knowledge of the incidence and characteristics of iatrogenic events, and continuous monitoring could help to improve quality of health care for this vulnerable population."
Posted: 01 February 2008
(c) 2008 Current Medicine Group Ltd, a part of Springer Science+Business Media