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Eur J Emerg Med. 2013 Feb;20(1):61-3. doi: 10.1097/MEJ.0b013e3283501677.

Ventilation-associated pneumonia after intubation in the prehospital or the emergency unit.

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Cliniques Universitaires Saint-Luc, Université Catholique de Louvain, Brussels, Belgium.


The aim of the study was to evaluate the prevalence and the risk factors of ventilation-associated pneumonia (VAP) for out-of-hospital or in the emergency department intubated patients. This was a retrospective descriptive study. All intubated adults subsequently admitted to the ICU over 1-year period were included. Among 75 patients, 15 patients developed VAP (20%; 95% CI 12-31%). A multivariate analysis revealed three variables independently associated with VAP: cardiorespiratory arrest as the reason of intubation (P=0.001), out-of-hospital as the location of intubation (P=0.011), and clinical macroaspiration as clinical characteristic at the time of intubation (P=0.024). Death rate was 17% and was not significantly higher for patients with VAP (P=0.9; 95% CI 0.32-4.95%). Emergency care workers should be aware of the potential 20% occurrence of VAP when they intubate and ventilate a patient. Preventive strategies, which have been proven effective in ICUs, should be implemented in the emergency setting.

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