What are the risk factors for bacterial pneumonia?

Updated: Sep 30, 2020
  • Author: Justina Gamache, MD; Chief Editor: Guy W Soo Hoo, MD, MPH  more...
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Coinfection with H1N1 influenza increases the risk of secondary bacterial pneumonia, with S pneumoniae the most likely coinfection. [26] However, pregnant patients with H1N1 influenza in the 2009 pandemic were at increased risk of developing secondary Klebsiella pneumonia with poor clinical outcome. [27]

Other risk factors include local lung pathologies (eg, tumors, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease [COPD], bronchiectasis), chronic gingivitis and periodontitis, and smoking which impairs resistance to infection. Furthermore, any individual with an altered sensorium (eg, seizures, alcohol or drug intoxication) or central nervous system (CNS) impairment (eg, stroke) may have a reduced gag reflex, which allows aspiration of stomach or oropharyngeal contents and contributes to the development of aspiration pneumonias.

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