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Factors Associated With Cellulitis-Related ED Visits

Disparities in health care may be associated with the burden of emergency department (ED) visits for cellulitis/erysipelas, according to the findings of a recent study.

Researchers came to their conclusion after conducting a cross-sectional study using a 20% sample of the 2006 to 2016 National Emergency Department Sample (n=320,080,467) to determine the prevalence, risk factors, complications, and costs of emergency care for cellulitis/erysipelas.

They identified multiple factors associated with ED visits for cellulitis/erysipelas. According to their findings, the mean annual incidence of ED visits with a primary diagnosis of cellulitis/erysipelas among adult and pediatric patients were 2.42 to 3.55 per million and 1.14 to 2.09 per million, respectively.

While ED visits for cellulitis/erysipelas decreased significantly from 2006 to 2015, the researchers found the cost of these visits doubled among adults ($720-$1,680) and tripled among children ($939-$2,823). Also, ED visits for cellulitis/erysipelas were associated with increased infectious complications.

Compared with patients without a primary diagnosis of cellulitis/erysipelas, the group found ED visits with a primary diagnosis of cellulitis/erysipelas were associated public or no insurance, lower household income-quartiles, and emergent care during the weekends and summer months.

“There is a substantial and increasing burden of ED visits for cellulitis/erysipelas in the US,” the researchers concluded. “Many ED visits occurred for uncomplicated cellulitis/erysipelas, in part due to healthcare disparities.”

Reference

Ren Z, Silverberg JI. Burden, risk factors and infectious complications of cellulitis and erysipelas in United States adults and children in the emergency department setting. J Am Acad Dermatol. Published online November 22, 2020. doi:10.1016/j.jaad.2020.11.021

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