I am interested in using the openFDA database to look at adverse drug events in hospitalized neonates and infants. Is it possible to determine age in months for newborns and infants? Also, is gestational age at birth present in the database, in order to determine infants born prematurely versus those born at term?

Thanks, Jon

  1. For patient age in months, yes, it is possible but might not be as easy as you'd like it to be. As you will see from https://api.fda.gov/drug/event.json?search=receivedate:[1900-01-01+TO+3000-01-01]&count=patientonsetageunit (and referencing the values for patientonsetageunit from https://open.fda.gov/drug/event/reference/, the majority of reports in the database have ages defined in years but 40,000 or so have an age unit in months, weeks, days, or hours. You could, of course, convert those non-month units into months.

  2. In terms of gestational age, I do not believe that data is available in the public data files which openFDA is built off of.

Use caution no matter what you end up doing. It looks like 46.19% of the 3,643,453 reports in the openFDA API are missing an age

Hope this helps!

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