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Pneumonia Management in Children

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Pneumonia Management in Children

  • Management
  • General
  1. See Pneumonia Management
  2. See age directed management below
  • Indications
  • Hospitalization
  1. Respiratory distress (Apnea, grunting, nasal flaring)
    1. See Respiratory Distress in Children with Pneumonia
    2. See Pediatric Early Warning Score (PEWS Score)
  2. Hypoxemia (<90% Oxygen Saturation) or Cyanosis
  3. Virulent pathogen suspected (e.g. MRSA)
  4. All infants under age 4 months (consider in children under 6 months)
  5. Toxic appearance
  6. Dehydration with Vomiting or poor oral intake
  7. Immunocompromised patient
  8. Pneumonia refractory to oral antibiotics
  9. Unreliable home environment
  10. (2002) Thorax 57:i1-24 [PubMed]
  • Indications
  • PICU admission
  • Management
  • Newborn (under 3 weeks old)
  1. Admit all newborns with Pneumonia
  2. Antibiotic regimen (Use 2-3 antibiotics combined)
    1. Antibiotic 1: Ampicillin
      1. Age <7 days
        1. Weight <2 kg: 50-100 mg/kg divided q12 hours
        2. Weight >2 kg: 75-150 mg/kg divided q8 hours
      2. Age >7 days
        1. Weight <1.2 kg: 50-100 mg/kg divided q12 hours
        2. Weight 1.2-2 kg: 75-150 mg/kg divided q8 hours
        3. Weight >2 kg: 100-200 mg/kg divided q6 hours
    2. Antibiotic 2: Gentamicin (dosing below if >37 weeks)
      1. Age <7 days
        1. Weight <2 kg: 2.5 mg/kg IV every 18 to 24 hours
        2. Weight >2 kg: 2.5 mg/kg IV every 12 hours
      2. Age >7 days
        1. Dose: 2.5 mg/kg IV every 12 hours
    3. Antibiotic 3: Cefotaxime (optional)
      1. Age <7 days: 50 mg/kg IV every 12 hours
      2. Age >7 days: 50 mg/kg IV every 8 hours
  3. Organisms requiring additional antibiotic coverage
    1. Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA): Choose 1
      1. Vancomycin
        1. Age <7 days
          1. Weight <2 kg: 12.5 mg/kg IV every 12 hours
          2. Weight >2 kg: 15 mg/kg IV every 12 hours
        2. Age >7 days
          1. Weight <2 kg: 18 mg/kg IV every 12 hours
          2. Weight >2 kg: 22 mg/kg IV every 12 hours
      2. Linezolid
        1. Dose: 10 mg/kg every 8 hours
    2. Chlamydia trachomatis
      1. Erythromycin 12.5 mg/kg orally or IV every 6 hours for 14 days
  • Management
  • Age 3 weeks to 3 months
  1. Precautions
    1. Erythromycin is associated with increased risk of Hypertrophic Pyloric Stenosis in infants under 6 weeks of age
    2. No empiric therapy is needed for Staphylococcus aureus coverage as this rarely occurs in this age group
  2. Outpatient (if affebrile without respiratory distress)
    1. Azithromycin 10 mg/kg (max 500 mg) orally on day 1 then 5 mg/kg (max 250 mg) orally on days 2 to 5 or
    2. Erythromycin 12.5 mg/kg orally every 6 hours for 14 days
  3. Inpatient (if febrile or hypoxic)
    1. Macrolide
      1. Azithromycin 10 mg/kg (max 500 mg) IV on day 1 then 5 mg/kg (max 250 mg) IV on days 2 to 5 or
      2. Erythromycin 10 mg/kg IV every 6 hours
    2. Febrile
      1. Add Cefotaxime 50 mg/kg IV every 8 hours
    3. Lobar Pneumonia (presumed Streptococcus Pneumoniae)
      1. Add Ampicillin 50-75 mg/kg IV every 6 hours
  • Management
  • Age 3 months to 5 years (outpatient)
  1. See inpatient antibiotic selection below
  2. Precautions
    1. Viral Pneumonia (esp. Influenza, RSV) predominates in preschool children
      1. Most common in under age 2 years old
      2. Viral PneumoniaIncidence decreases with age
    2. Empiric antibiotic therapy is not recommended unless Bacterial Pneumonia is suspected
      1. Coverage below first addresses Streptococcus Pneumoniae coverage
      2. Streptococcus Pneumoniae has increasing resistance to Macrolide antibiotics (e.g. Azithromycin)
    3. May treat as outpatient if patient affebrile without respiratory distress
  3. First-line oral agent for presumed Bacterial cause (choose one)
    1. Amoxicillin (preferred)
      1. Dose: 45 mg/kg/day orally divided every 12 hours for 5 days
      2. Hazir (2008) Lancet 371(9606): 49-56 [PubMed]
    2. Augmentin (alternative)
      1. Dose: 45 mg/kg every 12 hours
  4. Presumed Atypical Pneumonia (choose one)
    1. Azithromycin
      1. Dose: 10 mg/kg (max 500 mg) orally on day 1 then 5 mg/kg (max 250 mg) orally on days 2 to 5
    2. Clarithromycin
      1. Dose: 7.5 mg/kg twice daily for 7 to 14 days
    3. Erythromycin
      1. Dose: 10 mg/kg orally four times daily
  5. Consider initial parenteral antibiotic at diagnosis
    1. See inpatient antibiotic regimen below
    2. Start oral antibiotics concurrently as below
  6. Influenza suspected
    1. Oseltamavir (Tamiflu)
  • Management
  • Age 5 to 18 years (outpatient)
  1. See inpatient antibiotic selection below
  2. Approach
    1. Choose an agent based on typical versus atypical Bacterial cause suspected
    2. In more severe cases, or in which typical can not be distinguished from each other
      1. Choose an antibiotic from each category (one from typical, one from atypical)
  3. Typical Bacterial Pneumonia (i.e. Streptococcus Pneumoniae): Choose one
    1. Amoxicillin (preferred)
      1. Dose: 90 mg/kg/day orally divided every 12 hours for 5 days
      2. Hazir (2008) Lancet 371(9606): 49-56 [PubMed]
    2. Augmentin (alternative)
      1. Dose: 90 mg/kg/day divided every 12 hours
  4. Presumed Atypical Bacterial Pneumonia: Choose one
    1. Azithromycin
      1. Dose: 10 mg/kg (max 500 mg) orally on day 1 then 5 mg/kg (max 250 mg) orally on days 2 to 5
    2. Clarithromycin
      1. Dose: 7.5 mg/kg twice daily for 7 to 14 days
    3. Erythromycin
      1. Dose: 10 mg/kg orally four times daily
    4. Doxycycline (use only if over age 8 years)
      1. Dose: 100 mg orally every 12 hours
  5. Consider initial parenteral antibiotic at diagnosis
    1. See inpatient antibiotic regimen below
    2. Start oral antibiotics concurrently as below
  6. Influenza suspected
    1. Oseltamivir (Tamiflu) or
    2. Zanamavir
      1. Indicated only for children 7 years or older
  • Management
  • Age 3 months to 18 years (inpatient, parenteral)
  1. See outpatient antibiotics above
  2. Primary Antibiotic (choose one)
    1. Fully immunized and not life-threatening infection
      1. Ampicillin 40-50 mg/kg IV every 6 hours (preferred)
    2. Not fully immunized against S. Pneumoniae and H. Influenzae or life-threatening infection
      1. Cefotaxime 50 mg/kg IV every 8 hours or
      2. Ceftriaxone 75 to 100 mg/kg/day up to 1-2 g/day divided every 12 to 24 hours
  3. Atypical Pneumonia suspected (choose one)
    1. Add Azithromycin 10 mg/kg (max 500 mg) IV on day 1 then 5 mg/kg (max 250 mg) IV on days 2 to 5 or
    2. Add Erythromycin 40 mg/kg/day IV divided q6 hours or
    3. Add Clarithromycin 7.5 mg/kg twice daily for 7 to 14 days
  4. MRSA suspected (choose one)
    1. Add Vancomycin 14 to 20 mg/kg IV every 8 hours or
    2. Add Linezolid (Zyvox) 10 mg/kg IV/PO every 8h or if >12 yo, 600 mg PO/IV twice daily
    3. Add Clindamycin 14 mg/kg IV every 8 hours or
      1. If patient stable without bacteremia and Clindamycin resistance <10%
  • Management
  • Adjunctive measures
  1. Zinc supplementation in critically ill children with Pneumonia
    1. Zinc supplementation associated with decreased mortality, shorter hospitalizations and fewer treatment failures
    2. Greatest benefit appears to be in developing countries where Zinc Deficiency occurs frequently (30% of world population)
    3. Basnet (2012) Pediatrics 129(4): 701-8 [PubMed]
    4. Srinivasan (2012) BMC Med 10: 14 [PubMed]