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Cold Symptoms Are Top Reason Kids Visit Emergency Room, Report Shows

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COLD SYMPTOMS EMERGENCY ROOM
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Sneezing, runny nose and other cold-like symptoms are the top reason kids are brought to the emergency room, according to a new government report on the state of Americans' health that includes a special section on emergency care.

The data show cold symptoms accounted for 27 percent of kids' ER visits in 2009 and 2010, and 14 percent of adults' ER visits.

The report also showed that Medicaid recipients were more likely to go to the ER at least once in a year, compared with people without health insurance or people with private insurance.

The use of advanced imaging (such as CT scans or MRIs) during ER visits has also increased, going from being used in 5 percent of visits in 2000 to 17 percent of visits in 2010.

More highlights from the report:

- About one in five people visited an emergency room in the last year, while 7 percent of people visited an emergency room two or more times in the last year.

- Falls were the No. 1 injury-related cause of an ER visit from 2008 to 2010.

- Life expectancy has increased slightly for men and women between 2000 and 2010, going up from 74.1 years for men in 2000 to 76.2 years in 2010, and 79.3 years for women in 2000 to 81 years in 2010.

- Deaths from heart disease decreased by 30 percent from 2000 to 2010.

- Deaths from cancer decreased by 13 percent from 2000 to 2010.

- Nineteen percent of Americans smoked cigarettes in 2011.

- The number of U.S. adults ages 20 and older with a body mass index between 30 and 34.9 was 20 percent from 2007 to 2010, up from 14 percent during 1988 to 1994.

- Fewer U.S. adults had uncontrolled high blood pressure in 2007-2010: 49 percent, versus 74 percent in 1988-1994.

- Fewer U.S. adults had high cholesterol in 2007-2010: 14 percent, versus 20 percent in 1988-1994.

- A little less than half of U.S. adults didn't meet federal exercise guidelines (at least 150 minutes of moderate to intense exercise each week).

- Slightly fewer young Americans are uninsured now: 34 percent of people ages 19 to 25 in 2010, down to 28 percent in 2011.

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