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Current healthcare pathways in the treatment of rhinosinusitis in Germany

  • Park, Jonas Jae-Hyun
  • Bachert, Claus
  • Dazert, Stefan
  • Kostev, Karel
  • Seidel, David Ulrich
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2018
DOI: 10.1080/00016489.2018.1506153
Ghent University Institutional Archive
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Background: In the outpatient setting in Germany, patients with rhinosinusitis usually present at general practices (GP) or ear, nose, and throat practices (ENT) for initial diagnosis and treatment. Objectives: The aim of this study was to analyze the referral patterns of rhinosinusitis patients in GPs and ENT practices in Germany, with respect to existing recommendations. Material and methods: The study sample included patients from 940 GP and 106 ENT practices from Disease Analyzer database (IQVIA) who received an acute sinusitis (AS) or chronic sinusitis (CS), or nasal polyp (NP) in 2015. Results: The total numbers of patients in GP versus ENT practices were 24,648 versus 12,095 (AS), 26,768 versus 19,826 (CS), and 516 versus 1773 patients (NP). Referrals to ENT practices were made by GP in 12.3% (AS), 14.8% (CS), and 40.5% (NP). The percentages of patients in GP versus ENT practices with subsequent hospital admissions were 6.9 versus 3.3% (AS), 6.3 versus 6.5% (CS), and 9.5 versus 13.8% (NP), respectively. Conclusions: Although 40% of patients with NP who consult GPs are referred to ENT practices, it remains unclear how the other 60% are being treated. The hospital admission rates of patients with CS as well as of patients with NP were found to be surprisingly low.

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