Chemical pharmacotherapy for hospital-acquired pneumonia in the elderly

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© 2018, © 2018 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. Introduction: Hospital-acquired pneumonia (HAP) is a potentially serious infection that primarily affects older patients. The number of patients affected by multidrug-resistant (MDR) bacteria is increasing, including infection from strains of Staphylococcus aureus, Enterobacteriaceae, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Areas covered: This article focuses specifically on HAP, excluding patients afflicted by ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP). The pathogenesis and clinical features of HAP in the elderly are discussed as well as specific drug pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic considerations in elderly patients. The current recommended guidelines for the management of HAP are also discussed. Finally, the authors provide evidence on the empirical therapy used for the treatment of HAP and widely consider specific-pathogen treatment of HAP in elderly patients. Expert opinion: In patients not at risk of MDR organism infection, antibiotics including piperacillin-tazobactam, cefepime, carbapenems or fluorquinolones are recommended. However, the emergence of MDR organisms as causal agents of HAP makes it necessary to accurately assess risk factors to these pathogens and revise our knowledge on specific antimicrobial susceptibility patterns from each institution. The authors believe that broader-spectrum empiric antibiotic therapies that target P. aeruginosa and methicillin-resistant S. aureus are best recommended in elderly patients at risk of HAP infection by MDR strains.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)423-434
JournalExpert Opinion on Pharmacotherapy
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 4 Mar 2019


  • elderly patients
  • Hospital-acquired pneumonia
  • methicillin-resistant S. aureus pneumonia
  • P. aeruginosa pneumonia


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