John B. Darby*, Amrita Singh and Ricardo Quinonez Pages 253 - 259 ( 7 )
Background: Despite declining rates of community acquired pneumonia (CAP) in children, complicated pneumonia has been on the rise in the last two decades. The management of complicated pneumonia is challenging and continues to be an area of investigation. Despite recently published guidelines, many gaps exist and recent studies attempt to answer challenging questions.
Objective: The aim was to review recently published literature to inform the clinician about the most up to date management of complicated pneumonia in children.
Methods: Using Medline, a search of the medical literature was conducted in order to find relevant clinical trials and review articles published in the last 5 years.
Results: Narrow spectrum antibiotics including ampicillin and azithromycin remain important first line agents, but directed therapy towards causative pathogens is the ideal standard practice. Novel DNA isolation technologies hold promise for raising the diagnostic yield of pleural fluid. Surgical interventions are often required and new literature further supports the use of fibrinolytics and minimally invasive chest tube thoracostomy. Not to be overlooked is the importance of supportive measures including oxygen therapy and adequate fluid, electrolyte and nutrition support. The use of other adjunctive therapies such as steroids in pediatric complicated pneumonia remains controversial.
Conclusion: Recent studies have shown promise in establishing best practices for evaluation and management of complicated pneumonia in children. Despite these robust efforts however, many areas are in need of future inquiry and prospective studies could help to better understand the optimal therapeutic and diagnostic options for children with this common and persistent childhood illness.
Childhood illness, community acquired pneumonia, complicated pneumonia, corticosteroids, fibrinolytics, S. pneumoniae.
Department of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine / Texas Children's Hospital. 1102 Bates Street, #FC1860 Houston, Texas, TX, Department of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine, Texas Children's Hospital, Houston, Texas, TX, Department of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine, Texas Children's Hospital, Houston, Texas, TX