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Archivos argentinos de pediatría

Print version ISSN 0325-0075On-line version ISSN 1668-3501


BELLA, Mónica E  and  BORGIATTINO, Vanesa. Demand for hospitalization due to psychosocial causes in a pediatric hospital. Arch. argent. pediatr. [online]. 2016, vol.114, n.3, pp.252-257. ISSN 0325-0075.

Health care services show epidemiological changes and an increase in the number of consultations due to mental causes and violence without having the necessary capacity to respond to this increasing demand. Objective. To analyze and compare the demand for hospitalization due to psychosocial causes in a pediatric hospital during three different periods. Materials and methods. Descriptive, retrospective study. The cases were children/adolescents hospitalized for psychosocial causes at Hospital de Niños de la Santísima Trinidad, Córdoba. The data were processed using frequency analysis and chi-square test. Results. 221 records were analyzed. The hospitalization rate was 0.73% in the year 2000, 1.44% in 2005 and 1.26% in 2010. The hospitalization rate for psychosocial causes increased from 0.06 in 2000 to 0.10 in the years 2005 and 2010. The most common reasons for admission were: suspected child abuse in 44.2% (p < 0.0001), suicidal behavior in 18.7%, suspected sexual abuse in 10.05% and substance abuse in 6.8%. The psychomotor agitation episode and psychotic episode showed a prevalence of 2.4% in 2000, while in 2010 it was of 9.5% for the psychomotor agitation episode and of 5.7% for the psychotic episode. Suicidal behavior and suspected sexual abuse were more common in women and the psychomotor agitation episode and substance abuse were more common in men. Conclusions. Hospitalizations for psychosocial causes and, particularly, mental causes in children/adolescents have increased and show a different behavior according to age and gender. Health problems related to violence were the most frequent ones.

Keywords : Psychiatric emergency services; Hospitalization; Suicide attempt; Violence; Mental health.

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