2017 Volume 56 Issue 16 Pages 2125-2132
Objective We examined the general characteristics, survival rate, and most common reasons for visiting the emergency department (ED) among colorectal cancer patients in Taiwan. We performed a population-based retrospective study and used data sourced from the National Health Insurance Research Database (NHIRD).
Methods The colorectal cancer patient population, their diagnosis, and their medical management at the ED were identified using the Longitudinal Health Insurance Database 2000 (HV) codes and International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, Clinical Modification system. We investigated their reasons for visiting the ED and the medications used there, analyzed their cumulative survival curves using the Kaplan-Meier method, and compared the survival curves with other colorectal cancer patients who had never visited the ED.
Results Between 2000 and 2012, there were 6,532 ED visits by 3,347 colorectal patients, and the number per year increased gradually. The top three most common reasons for visiting ED were ill-defined conditions, abdominal pain, and intestinal obstruction. The overall survival rates of colorectal patients in the ED visit group at 3, 5, and 10 years, were 0.65, 0.56, and 0.47, respectively, without significant differences from the rates among colorectal cancer patients who did not visit the ED (p=0.2072).
Conclusion We described the circumstances of ED visitation by colorectal cancer patients in Taiwan. Health care providers and researchers should pay more attention to improve medical care quality and investigate more details to predict the outcome among colorectal cancer patients.