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July 25, 1977

Haemophilus influenzae Pneumonia in Adults

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Medicine, Infectious and Pulmonary Disease Services (Drs Everett, Adaniya, Stevens, and McNitt), Brooke Army Medical Center, Fort Sam Houston, Tex; and Department of Medicine (Dr Rahm), Darnall Army Hospital, Fort Hood, Tex.

JAMA. 1977;238(4):319-321. doi:10.1001/jama.1977.03280040039016

Thirty cases of Haemophilus influenzae pneumonia with clinical and laboratory features have previously been recorded in adults. During the past three years, we have examined 18 patients in whom this diagnosis was established by transtracheal aspirate or blood culture. Our study suggests that H influenzae, both typable and nontypable strains, is a more frequent cause of pneumonia in adults than previously appreciated. We found no clinical values that distinguished H influenzae pneumonia from other bacterial pneumonias. A properly performed Gram's stain of a transtracheal aspirate specimen is classical in its appearance and facilitates institution of appropriate initial treatment. The emergence of both typable and nontypable organisms resistant to ampicillin makes it important that organisms be isolated from reliable samples for sensitivity testing. With appropriate therapy, the prognosis for patients with H influenzae pneumonia appears to be good.

(JAMA 238:319-321, 1977)