2 - International Conference in Emergency Medicine and Public Health-Qatar Proceedings
  • ISSN: 1999-7086
  • EISSN: 1999-7094


To assess if stratification of patients based on clinical severity, laboratory markers and radiological findings at presentation would enable better prediction for the need for a surgical intervention. Single-centre retrospective cohort study done in the in-patient pediatric wards of a tertiary care centre in the State of Qatar. Participants – 56 children (aged 6 months – 14 years) with empyema or parapneumonic effusion, from July 2009- June 2013. Patients were classified into mild and severe clinical presentation based on the 2011 British thoracic society (BTS) pneumonia guidelines. Interventions were categorized as conservative (antibiotics only), non-conservative (antibiotic and surgical intervention). The values of CRP, ESR, WBC count, upon admission and follow up were also assessed, along with pleural fluid markers such as LDH, glucose and PH. The chest X-ray and chest USG were also assessed for severity and loculations. Of the 56 patients included, 29 (52%) had severe and 27 (48%) had mild clinical presentation. 26 patients (46.4%) were managed conservatively, while 30 patients (53.6%) required intervention. Younger patients (3.8 ± 3 years) tend to have increased risk for intervention, severe clinical presentation and loculations on USG. Age ≤  5 years, severe clinical presentation, serum WBC count ≥ 20,000/mm3, ESR ≥ 80 mm/hr, serum CRP ≥ 100 mg/dl, moderate to severe effusion on chest radiograph and presence of loculation on USG individually increased the likelihood for a surgical intervention in pediatric patients with parapneumonic effusion. Having ≥  4 out of 7 criteria accurately predicted a high risk for the need for surgical intervention (OR-6.93, 95%CI-1.2-37, p-0.023, sensitivity 72%, specificity 73%). Having ≥  4 out of 7 criteria accurately predicted a high risk for the need for surgical intervention. Prospective trials are recommended to see if this would enable homogeneity in deciding when to intervene in patients with parapneumonic effusion thereby reducing the LOS and cost-burden on the healthcare system.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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