Medline ® Abstracts for References 64,65

of 'Treatment of community-acquired pneumonia in adults who require hospitalization'

Time to clinical stability in patients hospitalized with community-acquired pneumonia: implications for practice guidelines.
Halm EA, Fine MJ, Marrie TJ, Coley CM, Kapoor WN, Obrosky DS, Singer DE
JAMA. 1998;279(18):1452.
CONTEXT: Many groups have developed guidelines to shorten hospital length of stay in pneumonia in order to decrease costs, but the length of time until a patient hospitalized with pneumonia becomes clinically stable has not been established.
OBJECTIVE: To describe the time to resolution of abnormalities in vital signs, ability to eat, and mental status in patients with community-acquired pneumonia and assess clinical outcomes after achieving stability.
DESIGN: Prospective, multicenter, observational cohort study.
SETTING: Three university and 1 community teaching hospital in Boston, Mass, Pittsburgh, Pa, and Halifax, Nova Scotia.
PATIENTS: Six hundred eighty-six adults hospitalized with community-acquired pneumonia.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Time to resolution of vital signs, ability to eat, mental status, hospital length of stay, and admission to an intensive care, coronary care, or telemetry unit.
RESULTS: The median time to stability was 2 days for heart rate (<or =100 beats/min) and systolic blood pressure (>or =90 mm Hg), and 3 days for respiratory rate (<or =24 breaths/min), oxygen saturation (>or =90%), and temperature (<or =37.2 degrees C [99 degrees F]). The median time to overall clinical stability was 3 days for the most lenient definition of stability and 7 days for the most conservative definition. Patients with more severe cases of pneumonia at presentation took longer to reach stability. Once stability was achieved, clinical deterioration requiring intensive care, coronary care, or telemetry monitoring occurred in 1% of cases or fewer. Between 65% to 86% of patients stayed in the hospital more than 1 day after reaching stability, and fewer than 29% to 46% were converted to oral antibiotics within 1 day of stability, depending on the definition of stability.
CONCLUSIONS: Our estimates of time to stability in pneumonia and explicit criteria for defining stability can provide an evidence-based estimate of optimal length of stay, and outline a clinically sensible approach to improving the efficiency of inpatient management.
Department of Health Policy, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY 10029, USA.
Reaching stability in community-acquired pneumonia: the effects of the severity of disease, treatment, and the characteristics of patients.
Menéndez R, Torres A, Rodríguez de Castro F, Zalacaín R, Aspa J, Martín Villasclaras JJ, Borderías L, Benítez Moya JM, Ruiz-Manzano J, Blanquer J, Pérez D, Puzo C, Sánchez-Gascón F, Gallardo J, Alvarez CJ, Molinos L, Neumofail Group
Clin Infect Dis. 2004;39(12):1783.
BACKGROUND: The natural history of the resolution of infectious parameters in patients with community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) is not completely known. The aim of our study was to identify those factors related to host characteristics, the severity of pneumonia, and treatment that influence clinical stability.
METHODS: In a prospective, multicenter, observational study, we observed 1424 patients with CAP who were admitted to 15 Spanish hospitals. The main outcome variable was the number of days needed to reach clinical stability (defined as a temperature of<or=37.2 degrees C, a heart rate of<or=100 beats/min, a respiratory rate of<or=24 breaths/min, systolic blood pressure of>or=90 mm Hg, and oxygen saturation>or=90% or arterial oxygen partial pressure of>or=60 mm Hg).
RESULTS: The median time to stability was 4 days. A Cox proportionalhazard model identified 6 independent variables recorded during the first 24 h after hospital admission related to the time needed to reach stability: dyspnea (hazard ratio [HR], 0.76), confusion (HR, 0.66), pleural effusion (HR, 0.67), multilobed CAP (HR, 0.72), high pneumonia severity index (HR, 0.73), and adherence to the Spanish guidelines for treatment of CAP (HR, 1.22). A second Cox model was performed that included complications and response to treatment. This model identified the following 10 independent variables: chronic bronchitis (HR, 0.81), dyspnea (HR, 0.79), confusion (HR, 0.61), multilobed CAP (HR, 0.84), initial severity of disease (HR, 0.73), treatment failure (HR, 0.31), cardiac complications (HR, 0.66), respiratory complications (HR, 0.77), empyema (HR, 0.57), and admission to the intensive care unit (HR, 0.57).
CONCLUSIONS: Some characteristics of CAP are useful at the time of hospital admission to identify patients who will need a longer hospital stay to reach clinical stability. Empirical treatment that follows guidelines is associated with earlier clinical stability. Complications and treatment failure delay clinical stability.
Servicio de Neumología, Hospital Universitario La Fe, Valencia, Spain.