Urinary tract infections are a common cause of hospitalization among people with multiple sclerosis (MS), especially older patients with progressive disease, and more attention should be given to their bladder, catheter, and general physical care, a U.K. study reported.
These infections are often linked to an emergency hospital admission, and carry a risk of death as well as higher costs to the healthcare system, its researchers wrote.
The study, “The prevention and management of hospital admissions for urinary tract infection in patients with multiple sclerosis,” was published in the journal Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders.
UTIs are relatively common among people with MS, but the epidemiology and characteristics of those who experience frequent unplanned hospital admissions due to UTIs are not well described.
Researchers at University College London reviewed patient records over a five-year period (April 2014 through March 2019) to identify areas where better management might lessen emergency admissions and lower the frequency of urinary tract infections (UTIs) in these people.
Records of 52 MS patients (25 female, 27 male), with an average age of 60, who either arrived at a hospital’s emergency department or were otherwise been admitted for a UTI were analyzed.
The median expanded disability status scale (EDSS) score for this group was 8.5, meaning that many were restricted to bed for much of day, but retained some use of their arms and could do some basic self-care.
Collectively, this group made 112 emergency hospital visits over those five years, resulting in 102 inpatient admissions, each with an average stay of 8.6 days.
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