A comparative study of clinical and paraclinical findings of elderly and non-elderly patients with acute pneumonia and pneumosepsis
Accurate diagnosis and timely treatment of pneumonia, as one of the most common of infectious diseases in elderly patients, require careful attention to the clinical and paraclinical findings, which may be different between the elderly and non-elderly patients. The aim of the present study was to compare the clinical, laboratory, and radiological findings of elderly and non-elderly patients with pneumonia and pneumosepsis. This cross-sectional study was performed on 97 elderly and 93 non-elderly patients with pneumonia, admitted to Sina hospital in Hamadan, west of Iran, in 2017. Patients in both groups were also, compared in terms of the underlying diseases, sepsis rate, electrolyte disturbances and CURB-65 criteria. All underlying diseases, except for HIV infection, in addition to clinical findings such as tachypnea, lethargy, decreased consciousness, hypotension, and respiratory alkalosis, were significantly more common in the elderly, compared to the non-elderly group. In the elderly group, the average length of hospital stay, sepsis rate, and mortality rate were 9.4 days, 74.2%, and 21.7%, respectively versus 6.2 days, 46.3%, and 3.2%, respectively in the non-elderly group. Patients in the two groups were significantly different in terms of CURB-65 criteria and radiological findings. For timely diagnosis of pneumonia and pneumosepsis in the elderly, it is necessary to consider any alteration in respiratory rate and consciousness status. Also, for proper treatment the clinicians should pay attention to existence of any comorbidities and electrolyte disturbances.
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