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, 6 (1), 43-48

Effect of Rapid Influenza Diagnostic Tests on Patient Management in an Emergency Department

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Effect of Rapid Influenza Diagnostic Tests on Patient Management in an Emergency Department

Jong-Hak Park et al. Clin Exp Emerg Med.

Abstract

Objective: We evaluated the effect of rapid influenza diagnostic tests (RIDTs) on patient management in an emergency department for 3 years after 2009, and also identified factors associated with the choice of treatment for patients with influenza-like illnesses.

Methods: The study period consisted of three influenza epidemic seasons. Patients older than 15 years who underwent RIDTs in the emergency department and were then discharged without admission were included.

Results: A total of 453 patients were enrolled, 114 of whom had positive RIDT results. Antiviral medication was prescribed to 103 patients (90.4%) who had positive RIDT results, while 1 patient (0.3%) who tested negative was treated with antivirals (P<0.001). Conservative care was administered to 11 RIDT-positive patients (9.6%) and 244 RIDT-negative patients (72.0%) (P<0.001). Symptom onset in less than 48 hours, being older than 65 years, and the presence of comorbidities were not associated with the administration of antiviral therapy.

Conclusion: RIDT results had a critical effect on physician decision-making regarding antiviral treatment for patients with influenza-like illnesses in the emergency department. However, symptom onset in less than 48 hours, old age, and comorbidities, which are all indications for antiviral therapy, were not found to influence the administration of antiviral treatment.

Keywords: Influenza; hospital; human; Diagnostic tests; routine; Emergency service.

Conflict of interest statement

No potential conflict of interest relevant to this article was reported.

Figures

Fig. 1.
Fig. 1.
Schematic flowchart of patient inclusion in the study. RIDT, rapid influenza diagnostic test; ILI, influenza-like illness.

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