Nursing home acquired pneumonia: approach to management.
Curr Opin Infect Dis. 2011 Jan 19;
Authors: El-Solh AA
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Pneumonia is among the leading causes of mortality in nursing home residents and a primary reason for transfer to acute care facilities. Compared with community-dwelling individuals, residents of long-term care facilities have extensive underlying medical illnesses and more functional disabilities and are at increased risk of acquiring drug-resistant pathogens. This review focuses on recent recommendations for diagnostic work up, validity of prognostic models, and current approach to treatment of nursing home acquired pneumonia (NHAP). RECENT FINDINGS: The inconsistency in defining NHAP is considered a potential hindrance for a uniform approach to the management of pneumonia. Diagnostic evaluation varies between facilities and depends on severity of illness and access to laboratory facilities. The role of prognostic models in stratifying severity of disease remains largely unknown due to paucity of studies and lack of a specific scoring system for hospitalized patients with NHAP. A controversy still exists concerning the best therapeutic option for NHAP, but it is reasonable to believe that each setting is adapting the existing evidence according to the best local practice. SUMMARY: A unified approach to defining, assessing, and stratifying pneumonia is essential to decrease morbidity and mortality in nursing home residents. High-quality randomized, controlled trials examining empiric antibiotic therapy are needed.
PMID: 21252661 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]