Introduction: Despite increasing health effects of arthropod bites and associated costs, research on their frequency is limited, especially at the population level. The aim of this study was to estimate the prevalence, correlates, and recent trends in visits to US emergency departments related to arthropod bites and stings. Methods: The prevalence of arthropod bites, including information regarding location of the bite, was calculated for years 2010 through 2014 using data from the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project Nationwide Emergency Department Sample. Sex- and age-stratified multivariate logistic regression analyses were conducted with “arthropod bite” as the dependent variable and patient and hospital characteristics as independent variables. Results: Overall, there were significant increases in bites over the study period with higher rates of bites in the summer months (June–August), especially among children. Individuals who seek treatment for arthropod bites in the emergency department are more likely to reside in zip codes with lower median household income and to be without insurance coverage or with Medicaid rather than private insurance. The cost of care related to arthropod bites increased approximately 40% over the study period. Conclusions: These results provide updated surveillance on the prevalence and correlates of arthropod bites and stings in the US population.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The admit study is a retrospective analysis of the 2010–2014 Nationwide Emergency Department Sample (NEDS) from the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP), sponsored by the US Department of Health and Human Services Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. The NEDS is considered a “limited data set” under the health insurance portability and accountability act (HIPAA) privacy rule and contains no direct patient identifiers. Under HIPAA guidelines, review by an institutional review board is not required for use of HCUP data.15
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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Emergency Medicine
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health