Last reviewed: November 2017
Last updated: November  2017

Summary

Definition

History and exam

Key diagnostic factors

  • presence of risk factors
  • cough
  • dyspnoea

Other diagnostic factors

  • fever
  • pleuritic chest pain
  • tachypnoea
  • foul-smelling breath
  • rales
  • frothy or purulent sputum
  • history of vomiting

Risk factors

  • chemoradiation for head and neck cancers
  • altered mental status
  • swallowing dysfunction
  • gastrointestinal disease
  • intubation or tracheostomy tube
  • older age
  • poor oral hygiene
  • feeding tube
  • recumbent position

Diagnostic investigations

1st investigations to order

  • O2 saturation
  • CXR
  • FBC
  • sputum Gram stain
  • sputum culture
Full details

Treatment algorithm

ACUTE

Contributors

Authors VIEW ALL

Adjunct Assistant Professor

Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine

Intermountain Medical Center

University of Utah

Salt Lake City

UT

Disclosures

MJL declares that he has no competing interests.

Dr Michael J. Lanspa would like to gratefully acknowledge Dr Richard Kanner and Dr Krishna Sundar, previous contributors to this monograph. DK and KS declares that they have no competing interests.

Peer reviewers VIEW ALL

Consultant Respiratory Physician

Department of Respiratory Medicine

Royal Brompton Hospital

London

UK

Disclosures

TM has received research funding from the Wellcome Trust and GlaxoSmithKline. He has acted as a paid consultant to GSK, Actelion, and Respironies.

Chief of Pulmonary and Critical Care

King Hussein Cancer Center

Amman

Jordan

Disclosures

FH declares that he has no competing interests.

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