Background Acute gastroenteritis (AGE) can be caused by a wide array of pathogens, including bacteria, viruses, and parasites. A prospective study to investigate the epidemiology and clinical presentation in young children hospitalized with AGE was conducted in a medical center in southern Taiwan. Methods Patients aged less than 5 years who was hospitalized due to AGE in National Cheng Kung University Hospital were enrolled from July 2014 to June 2016. The demographic information, clinical features and laboratory data were collected by chart reviews, and stool samples were sent to Centers of Disease Control, Taiwan (Taiwan CDC) for a panel of pathogen identification consisting of two viruses, nine bacteria, and five parasites. Results Totally 441 patients were enrolled in this study. Salmonella spp. was the leading cause of disease (21.8%), followed by norovirus (17.0%), Clostridium difficile (9.5%), and rotavirus (9.3%). Norovirus identification rate was the highest among patients less than 6 months of age, while Salmonella was highest among patients between 2 and 3 years old. Patients with Salmonella infection frequently presented with fever, lethargy, bloody stool, and elevated serum level of C-reactive protein (CRP); norovirus and rotavirus infection frequently presented with vomiting. Salmonella gastroenteritis also resulted in longer hospitalization and more frequent antibiotics administration. C. difficile could be isolated from both gastroenteritis patients and control children. Conclusion Salmonella spp. was the most common pathogen of AGE in hospitalized children in southern Taiwan during 2014–2016, followed by norovirus and rotavirus. Further monitoring of epidemiology characteristics among cardinal pathogens of pediatric gastroenteritis is necessary.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Immunology and Allergy
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)
- Microbiology (medical)
- Infectious Diseases