Pneumonia in nursing home patients: is it time for a specific therapeutic strategy?

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Gualberto Gussoni *
Ido Iori
Francesco Blasi
Alessandro Bulfoni
Sebastiano Costantino
Massimo Giusti
Antonella Valerio
Delfino Legnani
on behalf of the FASTCAP Study Group
(*) Corresponding Author:
Gualberto Gussoni |


Background: Nursing home-acquired pneumonia (NHAP) was described in 1978, but only in 2005 it has been proposed as part of a new category (health care-associated pneumonia) distinct from community- or hospital-acquired infections. However, limited clinical data exist to validate this proposal.
Aim of the study: To compare characteristics and outcome of patients hospitalised for pneumonia and coming from private residence or nursing home.
Methods: Post-hoc analysis of the prospective phase of the FASTCAP study, performed to evaluate the impact of the Recommendations issued by the Italian Federation of Internal Medicine (FADOI) in 2002 on the management of hospitalised community-acquired pneumonia (CAP).
Results: The study examined 1,219 patients coming from private residence, and 179 with NHAP. Failures of therapy were significantly more frequent in patients with NHAP (35.8% vs 24.9%; Odds Ratio 1.48; 95% confidence interval 1.05-2.09). Mortality was higher in patients coming from nursing home (24.0% vs 9.8%; OR 2.59; 95% CI 1.72-3.90). Antibiotic treatment was more frequently performed as monotherapy in case of NHAP.
Conclusions: At the time of FASTCAP, NHAP was included in the category of CAP, and coherently, treatment of NHAP was not more aggressive if compared to community-acquired infections. However, our results confirm that NHAP is at increased risk for worst outcome, and probably worth considering for specific therapeutic strategies. Future studies are needed to better assess the microbiology of NHAP, and to evaluate if specific treatments, as those recommended by recent guidelines, may improve the outcome for these high-risk patients.

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