Importance: Morbidity and mortality of children are important indicators of the performance of the public health system in any country. In China, the children's disease spectrum has gradually changed in recent years. However, the gender- and age-specific disease spectrum for hospitalized children under 15 years old is still unclear.
Objective: To explore the gender- and age-based distribution of diseases in hospitalized children under 15 years in China.
Methods: Medical records home page data for 2016 to 2018 were collected from 18 tertiary children's hospitals in China. The gender- and age-specific disease spectrum was analyzed, using the tenth revision of the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD-10).
Results: The most common diseases were those of the respiratory system (25.7% of all 2 232 142 hospitalized children). The top three diseases for boys were diseases of the respiratory system (25.6%), diseases of the digestive system (11.4%) and certain conditions originating in the perinatal period (8.6%). The top three diseases for girls were diseases of the respiratory system (25.9%), certain conditions originating in the perinatal period (10.1%), and factors influencing health status and contact with health services (9.4%). The most common diseases for children under 1 year old were certain conditions originating in the perinatal period (38.1%). For all other age groups, the most common conditions were respiratory diseases (33.8% for those aged 1-3 years, 25.2% for those aged 4-6 years, and 12.2% for those aged 7-14 years).
Interpretation: This study analyzed the medical records home pages of 18 children's hospitals to provide the first overview of the disease spectrum and its gender- and age-specific distribution among children in China.
Keywords: China; Disease spectrum; Hospitalized children.
© 2019 Chinese Medical Association. Pediatric Investigation published by John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd on behalf of Futang Research Center of Pediatric Development.