[Management of adolescents in pediatric hospitals. A national survey]

Arch Pediatr. 2000 Jul;7(7):732-7. doi: 10.1016/s0929-693x(00)80153-0.
[Article in French]


Hospital care of adolescents is a challenge for pediatric teams because of the characteristics and specific problems of this age group.

Methods: In 1996, a questionnaire was sent to all French public pediatric wards, 300 (i.e., 78%) of which participated. The goal of this survey was to investigate the facts and limitations encountered with hospitalization of patients 12 years and older.

Results: Data show that for more than half of the pediatric wards, the adolescent patient admission rate is higher than 10%. The upper age for hospitalization shows a shift towards adulthood, with 73% of the wards admitting adolescents up to 18 years of age. The main reasons for pediatric admission in this age group are somatic complaints, chronic diseases and suicide attempts. Psychosocial problems and psychiatric disorders are perceived as the most difficult to manage. However, a majority of pediatric wards appears to have an environment suitable for multidisciplinary networking. At the time of the survey, 39 wards (16%) had beds specifically destined for adolescents. These wards differed from others by their higher number of suicidal and anorexic inpatients.

Conclusions: Our study shows that pediatric wards are in the avant-garde of adolescent hospital care and it brings new data on the various problems encountered in these patients. It stresses the special needs of pediatric teams today in the field of adolescent medicine and calls for the development of specific educational programs.

Publication types

  • English Abstract

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Health Services / statistics & numerical data*
  • Adolescent Medicine / statistics & numerical data*
  • Child
  • Female
  • Hospitalization / statistics & numerical data*
  • Hospitals, Pediatric*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Disorders / therapy
  • Patient Admission
  • Social Support