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Clin Infect Dis. 1996 Dec;23(6):1240-5.

Serological study of responses to selected pathogens causing respiratory tract infection in the institutionalized elderly.

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Department of Medicine, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada.


In a prospective 2-year study, serological responses to selected pathogens were analyzed in 224 episodes of fever attributable to respiratory tract infection (51.8%) or of unknown source (48.2%) in 131 residents of two long-term-care facilities. A serological response was identified in 45 episodes (20.1%): Chlamydia pneumoniae (14 episodes), Haemophilus influenzae type b (1), influenza virus type A (14), respiratory syncytial virus (RSV;2), parainfluenza virus type 3 (7), C. pneumoniae and H. influenzae (3), C. pneumoniae and influenza virus type A (2), C. pneumoniae and RSV (1), and C. pneumoniae and parainfluenza virus type 3 (1). No serological responses to Chlamydia psittaci, Chlamydia trachomatis, parainfluenza virus types 1 and 2, influenza virus type B, or Mycoplasma pneumoniae were seen. Vaccination did not affect the duration of fever in those residents with serologically confirmed influenza A. Serologically confirmed C. pneumoniae infection was detected in 9.4% of all febrile episodes. Serological responses to a second agent were detected in 33% of the patients with C. pneumoniae infections, and these dual infections were associated with an underlying malignancy (P = .02). C. pneumoniae should be recognized as a potential pathogen when choosing empirical antimicrobial therapy for respiratory tract infection in residents of long-term-care facilities.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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