What are the possible complications of Klebsiella infections?

Updated: Jun 10, 2019
  • Author: Shahab Qureshi, MD, FACP; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Lung abscesses can occur days to weeks after Klebsiella infection. A lung abscess in a patient with a non–community-acquired pneumonia strongly suggests K pneumoniae infection.

Pulmonary gangrene leading to necrosis involves rapid destruction of part of the lung. This is believed to follow vascular compromise. Fortunately, this is rare.

Other pulmonary complications include cavitation, empyema, bronchopulmonary fistula, and pleural adhesions.

Superinfections can occur while patients are treated for K pneumoniae infection; likewise, K pneumoniae infection can be a superinfection that develops during inpatient treatment for another type of pneumonia.

Sepsis can complicate bacteremia and can result in shock and disseminated intravascular coagulopathy.

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