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Curr Opin Infect Dis. 2008 Apr;21(2):168-73. doi: 10.1097/QCO.0b013e3282f4f248.

What is healthcare-associated pneumonia and how is it managed?

Author information

  • 1Infectious Disease Service, Hospital Universitari de Bellvitge, Institut d'Investigació Biomèdica de Bellvitge, University of Barcelona, L'Hospitalet de Llobregat, Barcelona, Spain. jcarratala@ub.edu

Abstract

PURPOSE OF REVIEW:

Pneumonia developing before hospital admission in patients in close contact with the health system was recently termed 'healthcare-associated pneumonia' and proposed as a new category of respiratory infection. We focus on the recent literature concerning the epidemiology, causative organisms, antibiotic susceptibilities, and outcomes of and empirical antibiotic therapy for this condition.

RECENT FINDINGS:

The reported incidence of healthcare-associated pneumonia among patients requiring hospitalization for pneumonia ranges from 17% to 67%. Hospitalization within 90 days before pneumonia, attending a dialysis clinic and residing in a nursing home were the most common criteria for healthcare-associated pneumonia. Compared with patients with community-acquired pneumonia, those with healthcare-associated pneumonia are older, have greater co-morbidity, and are more likely to have aspiration pneumonia and pneumonia caused by antibiotic-resistant pathogens. Patients with healthcare-associated pneumonia also more frequently initially receive an inappropriate antibiotic therapy, have higher case fatality rates and have longer hospital stay.

SUMMARY:

Many patients hospitalized with pneumonia via the emergency department have healthcare-associated pneumonia. There are significant differences in the spectrum of causative organisms and antibiotic susceptibilities between healthcare-associated and community-acquired pneumonia. Physicians should differentiate patients with healthcare-associated pneumonia from those with community-acquired pneumonia to promote a targeted approach when selecting initial antibiotic therapy.

PMID:
18317041
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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