Wednesday, February 18, 2009

"Health care associated pneumonia" looks like a concept here to stay

The article from the Jan. 6,2009 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine provides outcome data from 55 hospitals in Italy that offers more validation to the concept of Health care associated pneumonia (HCA pneumonia) as a "distinct subset" of pneumonia, which had been proposed in 2005 by the American Thoracic Society.

HCA pneumonia is pneumonia occurring in patients who have had association with the health care system as in residence in a nursing home care or treatment at a dialysis clinics or hospitalizations in the recent past.Basically,these are patients who present more acutely ill with the lung infection often superimposed on various chronic illnesses and who have a higher incidence of certain microbes, namely staph aureus and various gram negative bacteria.Compared with community acquired pneumonia there are longer hospital stays and a higher mortality which is really what is expected when chronically ill patients develop pneumonia.

The American Thoracic Society's guidelines for HCA can be found here.

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