High reliability in respiratory rate assessment in children with respiratory symptomatology in a rural area in Mozambique

Miguel Lanaspa, Clarissa Valim, Sozinho Acacio, Katherine Almendinger, Rushdy Ahmad, Roger Wiegand, Quique Bassat

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

Early recognition of severe medical conditions is often based on clinical scores and vital sign measurements such as the respiratory rate (RR) count. We designed this study to determine the reliability of RR assessment counted three times during a full minute by independent observers in children in a developing country setting. A total of 55 participants were enrolled in the study. Participant ages ranged from 10 days to 7 years (median 22 months). Agreement for RR count was high (intraclass correlation coefficient of 0.95; 95% confidence interval: 0.93-0.97). Agreement for presence of tachypnea was also high (Kappa coefficient of 0.83, p<0.001). However, a single reading would have misclassified 5-11% of the participants as non-tachypneic. Repeated RR counts offer reliable results if done during a full minute. Patients not fulfilling tachypnea criterion but with a high RR count should have the measurement repeated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberfmt081
Pages (from-to)93-98
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of tropical pediatrics
Volume60
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was conducted as part of a larger study funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (OPP500092) to discover biomarkers to differentiate malaria from bacterial and viral pneumonia.

Keywords

  • Child
  • Pneumonia
  • Reliability of results
  • Respiratory rate
  • Tachypnea

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