Bacteremic Pneumococcal Pneumonia in Children

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We carried out a nationwide retrospective study on bacteremic pneumococcal pneumonia diagnosed from 1985 to 1994 in Finland. The records of 85 children were reviewed for symptoms, signs, laboratory data, and response to antibiotic therapy. The chest radiographs were reevaluated. Bacteremic pneumococcal pneumonia was characterized by high fever (≥39.0°C in 93%), leukocytosis (WBC count on admission of ≥15 × 109/L in 84%), and ill appearance (in 79%). Lobar or segmental consolidation was found in 79% of the chest radiographs. Of the patients, 28% had no respiratory symptoms, 6% presented with only gastrointestinal symptoms in addition to fever, and 4% had fever only. Tachypnea was recorded in 19% and rales in 14% of the patients. After onset of antimicrobial treatment, children became afebrile within an average of 22 hours. One patient developed pleural empyema, and none of the patients died.

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