Health Care Utilization

Children & Adolescents Neuromuscular Conditions

Lead Author(s): 

Scott B. Rosenfeld, MD

Supporting Author(s): 

Sylvia I. Watkins-Castillo, PhD

Neuromuscular conditions were diagnosed in 612,100 children and adolescent health care visits in 2012, of which 255,300 had a primary diagnosis of a neuromuscular condition. About 1 in 10 (11%) children and adolescents with any neuromuscular diagnoses were hospitalized (67,200), but fewer than 2% (4,500) with a primary neuromuscular diagnosis had a hospital discharge. (Reference Table 7.1.1 PDF CSV and Table 7.1.2 PDF CSV)

Males were more likely to be hospitalized than females for both any neuromuscular diagnoses or as a primary diagnosis. Children ages 6 to 10 years had the highest rate of hospitalization, both with any diagnoses and as a primary diagnosis. Rates of hospitalization declined as children age.

Neuromuscular conditions as a primary diagnosis accounted for about 1.5% of hospitalizations for any musculoskeletal condition diagnosis and only 0.1% of all hospitalizations for any health care condition. (Reference Table 7.5 PDF CSV)

Hospital Discharges for Children and Adolescents Age 20 and Under with Neuromuscular Diagnosis, by Sex and Age, United States 2012

Cerebral palsy was diagnosed in two-thirds (66%) of hospital discharges. Spina bifida and muscular dystrophy represented 18% and 8% of discharges, respectively.

Health Care Visits for Children and Adolescents Age 20 and Under with Neuromuscular Diagnosis, by Type, United States 2012


  • 2014

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