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Papers of the Week

2022 Jan 19

Life (Basel)



Pediatric Headache in Primary Care and Emergency Departments: Consensus with RAND/UCLA Method.


Prezioso G, Suppiej A, Alberghini V, Bergonzini P, Capra M E, Corsini I, De Fanti A, Fiumana E, Fornaro M, Marangio L, Ricciardelli P, Serra L, Cordelli D M, Esposito S, Esposito S
Life (Basel). 2022 Jan 19; 12(2).
PMID: 35207430.


Headache is the most frequent neurological symptom in childhood and the main reason for admission to pediatric emergency departments. The aim of this consensus document is to define a shared clinical pathway between primary care pediatricians (PCP) and hospitals for the management of children presenting with headache. For the purposes of the study, a group of hospital pediatricians and a group of PCP from the Emilia Romagna's health districts were selected to achieve consensus using the RAND/UCLA appropriateness method. Thirty-nine clinical scenarios were developed: for each scenario, participants were asked to rank the appropriateness of each option from 1 to 9. Agreement was reached if ≥75% of participants ranked within the same range of appropriateness. The answers, results, and discussion helped to define the appropriateness of procedures with a low level of evidence regarding different steps of the diagnostic-therapeutic process: primary care evaluation, emergency department evaluation, hospital admission, acute therapy, prophylaxis, and follow-up. The RAND proved to be a valid method to value appropriateness of procedures and define a diagnostic-therapeutic pathway suitable to the local reality in the management of pediatric headache. From our results, some useful recommendations were developed for optimizing the healthcare professionals' network among primary care services and hospitals.