Common Questions About Pneumonia in Nursing Home Residents.

Link to article at PubMed

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Common Questions About Pneumonia in Nursing Home Residents.

Am Fam Physician. 2015 Oct 1;92(7):612-620

Authors: Casey C, Fullerton MJ, Somerville N

Pneumonia in older adults residing in nursing homes can be challenging to diagnose and treat. Pneumococcal and influenza immunizations decrease the risk of pneumonia and are recommended for all nursing home patients. Older adults with pneumonia may not display classic signs and symptoms of infection, although most have at least one respiratory symptom. Suspicion of pneumonia is heightened if pulse oximetry measurements are low. The diagnosis of pneumonia is confirmed by chest radiography. To determine whether treatment is necessary and where treatment should occur, the patient's overall prognosis should be considered. If treatment is to occur, antibiotics should be administered as soon as possible for a duration of five to eight days; however, treatment may be extended in the absence of clinical resolution or in the presence of Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Oral antibiotics may be administered in the nursing home, whereas hospitalized patients should initially receive intravenous antibiotics and transition to oral antibiotics after clinical improvement. Antibiotic regimens for patients treated in the nursing home include a respiratory fluoroquinolone, or a beta-lactam antibiotic with a macrolide. Hospitalized patients may receive the same regimens, although several other oral and intravenous options are acceptable. Patients' prognosis can be accurately estimated using the SOAR score (which uses systolic blood pressure, oxygenation, age, and respiratory rate).

PMID: 26447444 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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