Drowning leads to 372,000 deaths annually worldwide and to severe morbidity secondary to asphyxiation or aspiration. Previous studies describe submersion injuries mainly in the pediatric population. This study describes characteristics of patients presenting with submersion injuries to US EDs and identifies predictors of poor outcomes after drowning.
NEDS collects hospital discharge information on treatments and resource utilization from 945 hospitals located in 33 States and the District of Columbia and it represents around 20% stratified sample of U.S. hospital-based EDs.
The CCS code 2602 was used to include all drowning and submersion injuries from the NEDS database and is equivalent to the following ICD-9 codes: E8300-9, E8317, E8320-9, E9100-4, E9108-9, E964, and E984.
Neurologic morbidity was defined as discharge from hospital with ICD-9 diagnosis codes of 3481 (Anoxic Brain Damage) or 78003 (Persistent Vegetative State).
We included all ED visits with a diagnosis code of drowning or submersion injury.
No patients were excluded from the study.