Medline ® Abstracts for References 77,78,83
of 'Treatment of community-acquired pneumonia in adults who require hospitalization'
Antibiotic timing and diagnostic uncertainty in Medicare patients with pneumonia: is it reasonable to expect all patients to receive antibiotics within 4 hours?
Metersky ML, Sweeney TA, Getzow MB, Siddiqui F, Nsa W, Bratzler DW
BACKGROUND: Many organizations, including the Centers for Medicare&Medicaid Services, measure the percentage of patients hospitalized with pneumonia who receive antibiotics within 4 h of presentation. Because the diagnosis of pneumonia can be delayed in patients with an atypical presentation, there are concerns that attempts to achieve a performance target of 100% may encourage inappropriate antibiotic usage and the diversion of limited resources from seriously ill patients. This study was performed to determine how frequently Medicare patients with a hospital discharge diagnosis of pneumonia present in a manner that could potentially lead to diagnostic uncertainty and a resulting appropriate delay in antibiotic administration.
METHODS: Randomly selected charts of hospitalized Medicare patients who have received diagnoses of pneumonia were reviewed independently by three reviewers to determine whether there was a potential reason for a delay of antibiotic administration other than quality of care. Antibiotic administration timing, patient demographic, and clinical characteristics were also abstracted.
RESULTS: Nineteen of 86 patients (22%; 95% confidence interval, 13.7 to 32.2) presented in a manner that had the potential to result in delayed antibiotic treatment due to diagnostic uncertainty. Diagnostic uncertainty was significantly associated with the lack of rales, normal pulse oximetry findings, and lack of an infiltrate seen on the chest radiograph. There was a nonsignificant trend toward a longer time until antibiotic treatment in patients with diagnostic uncertainty.
CONCLUSIONS: Many Medicare patients in whom pneumonia has been diagnosed present in an atypical manner. Delivering antibiotic treatment within 4 h for all patients would necessitate the treatment of many patients before a firm diagnosis can be made.
Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care, University of Connecticut School of Medicine, Farmington, CT, USA. Metersky@nso.uchc.edu
Antibiotic timing and errors in diagnosing pneumonia.
Welker JA, Huston M, McCue JD
Arch Intern Med. 2008;168(4):351.
BACKGROUND: The percentage of patients with community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) whose time to first antibiotic dose (TFAD) is less than 4 hours of presentation to the emergency department (ED) has been made a core quality measure, and public reporting has been instituted. We asked whether these time pressures might also have negative effects on the accuracy of diagnosis of pneumonia.
METHODS: We performed a retrospective review of adult admissions for CAP for 2 periods: group 1, when the core quality measure was a TFAD of less than 8 hours; and group 2, when the TFAD was lowered to less than 4 hours. We examined the accuracy of diagnosis of CAP by ED physicians.
RESULTS: A total of 548 patients diagnosed as having CAP were studied (255 in group 1 and 293 in group 2). At admission, group 2 patients were 39.0% less likely to meet predefined diagnostic criteria for CAP than were group 1 patients (odds ratio, 0.61; 95% confidence interval, 0.42-0.86) (P = .004). At discharge, there was agreement between the ED physician's diagnosis and the predefined criteria for CAP in 62.0% of group 1 and 53.9% of group 2 patients (P = .06) and between the ED physician's admitting diagnosis and that of the discharging physician in 74.5% of group 1 and 66.9% of group 2 patients (P = .05). The mean (SD) TFAD was similar in group 1 (167.0 [118.6]minutes) and group 2 (157.8 [96.3]minutes).
CONCLUSION: Reduction in the required TFAD from 8 to 4 hours seems to reduce the accuracy by which ED physicians diagnose pneumonia, while failing to reduce the actual TFAD achieved for patients.
Department of Medicine, University of Maryland School of Medicine, and Franklin Square Clinical Research Center, Franklin Square Hospital Center, Baltimore, MD 21237, USA. firstname.lastname@example.org
Radiographic resolution of community-acquired pneumonia.
Mittl RL Jr, Schwab RJ, Duchin JS, Goin JE, Albeida SM, Miller WT
Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 1994;149(3 Pt 1):630.
Clinicians are frequently faced with patients in whom the radiographic resolution of community-acquired pneumonia seems delayed. Previous studies of radiographic resolution of the disease have yielded conflicting results. We prospectively assessed the radiographic resolution of pneumonia in 81 non-immuno-compromised patients, presenting to the emergency room and ambulatory clinics of a large university hospital, who met clinical and radiographic criteria for pneumonia. Serial chest radiographs were obtained every 2 wk for an initial period of 8 wk, and then every 4 wk until 24 wk had passed, or until all radiographic abnormalities had cleared. Forty-one of the 81 patients (50.6%) demonstrated complete clearance after 2 wk. Fifty of the 75 patients (66.7%) followed to 4 wk demonstrated complete clearance. The rate of clearance was inversely correlated with age (p<0.001) and involvement of single versus multiple lobes (p<0.0001) (log-rank test). Clearance was faster in those patients treated as outpatients (3.8 wk versus 9.1 wk, p = 0.03) and in patients who were nonsmokers (4.5 wk versus 8.4 wk, p = 0.05) (log-rank test). Multivariate regression analysis demonstrated that only age (relative risk for clearance, +0.79 per decade) and single versus multiple lobes involved (relative risk for clearance, 0.55 for more than one lobe) had independent predictive value (Cox proportional hazards regression model).The radiographic resolution of pneumonia occurs more rapidly in younger patients and in those with only a single lobe involved.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
Department of Radiology, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia.