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[News from Ann. Intern. Med. on Jan. 6, 2009]Not All Pneumonias Should be Treated Equally
Date: 2009-01-07   Read: 104016

Not All Pneumonias Should be Treated Equally: Health Care-associated Pneumonia is Most Serious, Requires Aggressive Treatment

Researchers sought to determine the epidemiology and outcome for patients with community-acquired, health care-associated, or hospital-acquired pneumonia. During two one-week surveillance periods, researchers looked at 362 patients hospitalized with pneumonia. They collected information to identify patients with how their pneumonia was acquired. They then compared information on antibiotics used for treatment, severity of pneumonia, length of hospital stay, and death rates among the three groups. The researchers found that patients with community-acquired pneumonia had the least complicated course, with the shortest hospital stays, and the lowest death rates. Conversely, patients with hospital-acquired pneumonia had the most complicated cases, the longest hospital stays, and the highest in-hospital death rates. Researchers concluded that health care-associated pneumonia is a more serious illness than community-acquired pneumonia with worse patient outcomes. They suggest that doctors carefully identify how patients contracted pneumonia, and administer the appropriate antibiotics for the type of pneumonia the patient has in accordance with established guidelines.

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