Comorbidities and complications influence the diagnosis and management of geriatric supraglottitis

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IntroductionThis study aimed to assess the differences in the clinical characteristics, management, and outcomes of supraglottitis between geriatric and nongeriatric adults over a 30-month period.MethodsAll adult patients admitted to the emergency department with suspected supraglottitis and who underwent laryngoscopy for confirmation were included. We collected the clinical characteristics, management, and outcomes of these patients and compared geriatric (≥60 years old) and nongeriatric (12-59 years old) groups in terms of these data.ResultsEighty-one geriatric patients and 205 nongeriatric patients were reviewed during the study period. The accuracies of the clinical suspicions of supraglottitis were lower in the geriatric group (geriatric vs nongeriatric, 29.4% vs 47.3%, P = .008). The geriatric group constituted 19.8% of all supraglottitis patients. Comorbidities were discovered in 74.1% of the geriatric group and 25.4% of the nongeriatric group (P = .000). The complication rate in the geriatric patients was almost twice that of the nongeriatric patients (20.8% vs 10.8%). Additionally, the geriatric patients exhibited tendencies toward longer periods of intubation, hospitalization, and stay in the intensive care unit.ConclusionsThe clinical characteristics and management were similar between the geriatric and nongeriatric supraglottitis patients. Nevertheless, the comorbidities altered the clinical presentations of the geriatric patients and resulted in lower diagnostic accuracy. Additionally, the elevated complication rates of the geriatric patient might have negatively affected their outcomes.

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