Predictors of treatment failure and clinical stability in patients with community acquired pneumonia
Community acquired pneumonia (CAP) is the leading infectious cause of mortality worldwide with approximately 10% of patients hospitalized requiring intensive care unit (ICU) admission. The ability to predict clinical stability (CS) and treatment failure (TF) enables the clinician to alter antibiotics appropriately, facilitate a timely ICU admission, or arrange a suitable discharge. The detection of CS and TF can be difficult and changes in clinical signs may be subtle or delayed. Thus clinical scores and biomarkers are routinely used to identify severity and monitor clinical progression. The evidence, however, is vast and the definitive role of these systems is at times difficult to elucidate. The aim of this review is to analyse the current literature and to provide a rational and clinically focused view of the predictive utility of various systems used to identify CS and TF in CAP.