Derivation of the Pediatric Acute Gastroenteritis Risk Score to Predict Moderate-to-Severe Acute Gastroenteritis

Pediatric Emergency Research Canada (PERC) the Pediatric Emergency Care Applied Research Network (PECARN)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


OBJECTIVES: Although most acute gastroenteritis (AGE) episodes in children rapidly self-resolve, some children go on to experience more significant and prolonged illness. We sought to develop a prognostic score to identify children at risk of experiencing moderate-to-severe disease after an index emergency department (ED) visit. METHODS: Data were collected from a cohort of children 3 to 48 months of age diagnosed with AGE in 16 North American pediatric EDs. Moderate-to-severe AGE was defined as a Modified Vesikari Scale (MVS) score ≥9 during the 14-day post-ED visit. A clinical prognostic model was derived using multivariable logistic regression and converted into a simple risk score. The model's accuracy was assessed for moderate-to-severe AGE and several secondary outcomes. RESULTS: After their index ED visit, 19% (336/1770) of participants developed moderate-to-severe AGE. Patient age, number of vomiting episodes, dehydration status, prior ED visits, and intravenous rehydration were associated with MVS ≥9 in multivariable regression. Calibration of the prognostic model was strong with a P value of 0.77 by the Hosmer-Lemenshow goodness-of-fit test, and discrimination was moderate with an area under the receiver operator characteristic curve of 0.68 (95% confidence interval [CI] 0.65-0.72). Similarly, the model was shown to have good calibration when fit to the secondary outcomes of subsequent ED revisit, intravenous rehydration, or hospitalization within 72 hours after the index visit. CONCLUSIONS: After external validation, this new risk score may provide clinicians with accurate prognostic insight into the likely disease course of children with AGE, informing disposition decisions, anticipatory guidance, and follow-up care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)446-453
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of pediatric gastroenterology and nutrition
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Gastroenterology


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