Prevalence of Dyspnea among Patients Attending the Emergency Department of a Tertiary Care Hospital: A Descriptive Cross-sectional Study

  • Anmol Purna Shrestha Department of General Practice and Emergency Medicine, Dhulikhel Hospital, Dhulikhel, Kavre, Nepal
  • Roshana Shrestha Department of General Practice and Emergency Medicine, Dhulikhel Hospital, Dhulikhel, Kavre, Nepal
  • Sanu Krishna Shrestha Department of General Practice and Emergency Medicine, Dhulikhel Hospital, Dhulikhel, Kavre, Nepal
  • Alok Pradhan Department of General Practice and Emergency Medicine, Dhulikhel Hospital, Dhulikhel, Kavre, Nepal
  • Samjhana Basnet Department of General Practice and Emergency Medicine, Dhulikhel Hospital, Dhulikhel, Kavre, Nepal
Keywords: chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; dyspnea; emergency medicine; shortness of breath.

Abstract

Introduction: Dyspnea is a common presenting complaint in the emergency department worldwide and a diagnostic challenge for emergency physicians. Our study aims to find the prevalence of dyspnea among patients attending emergency department in our hospital.

Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted in the emergency department of Dhulikhel hospital from May 2019 to July 2019 after ethical approval from the institutional review committee. Total 1200 samples were collected by consecutive sampling method. All patients were triaged in the emergency department as a part of regular protocol. The participants were included in the study after obtaining an informed consent from the patient or caretaker (if the patient were not able to provide it). Point estimate at 95% confidence interval was calculated along with frequency and proportion for binary data. The statistical analysis was done using R version 3.5.3 (2019-03-11).

Results: The prevalence of dyspnea among patients attending emergency department of a tertiary care hospital was 107 (8.9%) (4.6%-13.2%) at 95% confidence interval. The patients triaged into red, orange and yellow categories were 14 (13.1%), 50 (46.7%) and 43 (40.2%) respectively. Median age was 64 years and 74 (69%) were ≥60 years. Sixty-seven (62.6%) were females and 40 (37.4%) were males. Forty-four (41.1%) arrived by ambulance. Most commonly associated symptoms were cough and fever 59 (51.1%) and 44 (41.1%) respectively.

Conclusions: The prevalence of dyspnea among patients attending emergency department of our hospital is higher compared to that of other studies. This warrants structured and prompt management of dyspnea for quality improvement.

Published
2019-10-31
How to Cite
Shrestha, A. P., Shrestha, R., Shrestha, S. K., Pradhan, A., & Basnet, S. (2019). Prevalence of Dyspnea among Patients Attending the Emergency Department of a Tertiary Care Hospital: A Descriptive Cross-sectional Study. Journal of Nepal Medical Association, 57(219). https://doi.org/10.31729/jnma.4582
Section
Original Article