Clinical and Laboratory Factors Associated with Prolonged Hospital Stay among Patients with Cellulitis/Erysipelas

Ângela Roda, Ana Marcos Pinto, Ana Rita Filipe, Ana Rita Travassos, João Pedro Freitas, Paulo Filipe

Abstract


Introduction: Cellulitis and erysipelas represent the most frequent cause of hospitalization in the dermatology department of Santa Maria Hospital in Lisbon, Portugal. The aim of this study was to investigate whether patient demographics, comorbidities, previous episodes of cellulitis/erysipelas, the presence of complications, laboratory markers at admission, microbial isolation or previous use of antibiotics, are associated with prolonged stays.
Material and Methods: Retrospective analysis, including patients admitted with cellulitis/erysipelas in the inpatient dermatology department of Santa Maria Hospital between July 1st 2012 and June 30th 2017.
Results: There were 372 admissions, corresponding to 348 patients. The median length of stay was 11 days. Increased age (p = 0.002, OR 1.03, 95% CI 1.01 – 1.04), previous episode of cellulitis/erysipelas requiring hospitalization (p = 0.005, OR 4.81, 95% CI 1.63 – 14.23), the presence of cellulitis/erysipelas-associated complications (p = 0.001, OR 3.28, 95% CI 1.63 – 6.59), leukocytosis (p = 0.049, OR 1.81, 95% CI 1.00 – 3.30), high levels of C-reactive protein (p = 0.035, OR 1.03, 95% CI 1.00 – 1.06) and a positive culture result (p = 0.002, OR 2.59, 95% CI 1.41 – 4.79) were associated with prolonged hospitalization.
Discussion: Prolonged hospitalization for cellulitis/erysipelas is associated with higher costs, additional clinical investigation, invasive treatments, prolonged courses of antibiotic therapy, risk of nosocomial infections, and delayed return to activities of daily living. Thus, the investigation of clinical-laboratory factors associated with prolonged hospitalization for cellulitis / erysipelas is essential and may be
useful for the construction of a severity score.
Conclusion: The knowledge of the characteristics that are associated with prolonged stay among patients with cellulitis/erysipelas may be relevant to improve health care, by reducing the length of hospital stay and associated risks and costs.


Keywords


C-Reactive Protein; Cellulitis; Erysipelas; Hospitalization; Leukocytosis

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