Pneumonia in Geriatric Patients

  • Nages Nagaratnam
  • Kujan Nagaratnam
  • Gary Cheuk
Reference work entry


In the elderly, the incidence and prevalence of pneumonia are four times higher than that of younger population. Age-associated changes are risk factors in the elderly for lower respiratory tract infections. Elderly patients have an excessive incidence of nosocomial pneumonia. The organisms affecting the elderly are the same as in the younger adults but with a different age-related distribution. In the elderly, the presenting features are often determined more by the host than by the specific organism causing the infection. The radiological appearances produced by the different organisms are variable and the radiological patterns are inconclusive, and there is no correlation between the pathological changes and the radiological appearances. The current approach to empirical management dwells on the type of patient (community or hospital) rather than the type of symptoms (typical or atypical). The antibiotic chosen should have an appropriate spectrum of the likely pathogens causing these infections and upon local resistance patterns of suspected organisms. The elderly have higher rates of hospitalization with a significant impact on morbidity and mortality.


Nosocomial pneumonia Community-acquired pneumonia Pneumococcal vaccine Pneumonia severity index Curb-65 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nages Nagaratnam
    • 1
  • Kujan Nagaratnam
    • 1
  • Gary Cheuk
    • 2
  1. 1.The University of SydneyWestmead Clinical SchoolWestmeadAustralia
  2. 2.Rehabilitation and Aged Care ServiceBlacktown-Mt Druitt HospitalMount DruittAustralia

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