Comparisons of early discharge and outpatient postchemotherapy supportive care in pediatric acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patients are limited. We used data from the Pediatric Health Information System on a cohort of children treated for newly diagnosed AML to compare course-specific mortality and resource utilization in patients who were discharged after chemotherapy to outpatient management during neutropenia relative to patients who remained hospitalized. Patients were categorized at each course as early or standard discharge. Discharges within 3 days after chemotherapy completion were considered "early". Resource utilization was determined based on daily billing data and reported as days of use per 1000 hospital days. Inpatient mortality, occurrence of intensive care unit (ICU)-level care, and duration of hospitalization were compared using logistic, log-binomial and linear regression methods, respectively. Poisson regression with inpatient days as offset was used to compare resource use by discharge status. The study population included 996 patients contributing 2358 treatment courses. Fewer patients were discharged early following Induction I (7%) than subsequent courses (22-24%). Across courses, patients discharged early experienced high readmission rates (69-84%), yet 9-12 fewer inpatient days (all P < 0.001). Inpatient mortality was low across courses and did not differ significantly by discharge status. The overall risk for ICU-level care was 116% higher for early compared to standard discharge patients (adjusted risk ratio: 2.16, 95% confidence interval: 1.50, 3.11). Rates of antibiotic, vasopressor, and supplemental oxygen use were consistently elevated for early discharge patients. Despite similar inpatient mortality to standard discharge patients, early discharge patients may be at greater risk for life-threatening chemotherapy-related complications, including infections.
- Acute myeloid leukemia
- Patient discharge