Aspiration Risk Factors, Microbiology, and Empiric Antibiotics for Patients Hospitalized With Community-Acquired Pneumonia.

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Marin-Corral, Judith
Pascual-Guardia, Sergi
Amati, Francesco
Aliberti, Stefano
Masclans, Joan R
Soni, Nilam
Rodriguez, Alejandro
Sibila, Oriol
Sanz, Francisco
Sotgiu, Giovanni

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Aspiration community-acquired pneumonia (ACAP) and community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) in patients with aspiration risk factors (AspRFs) are infections associated with anaerobes, but limited evidence suggests their pathogenic role.

Research question

What are the aspiration risk factors, microbiology patterns, and empiric anti-anaerobic use in patients hospitalized with CAP?

Study design and methods

This is a secondary analysis of GLIMP, an international, multicenter, point-prevalence study of adults hospitalized with CAP. Patients were stratified into three groups: (1) ACAP, (2) CAP/AspRF+ (CAP with AspRF), and (3) CAP/AspRF- (CAP without AspRF). Data on demographics, comorbidities, microbiological results, and anti-anaerobic antibiotics were analyzed in all groups. Patients were further stratified in severe and nonsevere CAP groups.


We enrolled 2,606 patients with CAP, of which 193 (7.4%) had ACAP. Risk factors independently associated with ACAP were male, bedridden, underweight, a nursing home resident, and having a history of stroke, dementia, mental illness, and enteral tube feeding. Among non-ACAP patients, 1,709 (70.8%) had CAP/AspRF+ and 704 (29.2%) had CAP/AspRF-. Microbiology patterns including anaerobes were similar between CAP/AspRF-, CAP/AspRF+ and ACAP (0.0% vs 1.03% vs 1.64%). Patients with severe ACAP had higher rates of total gram-negative bacteria (64.3% vs 44.3% vs 33.3%, P = .021) and lower rates of total gram-positive bacteria (7.1% vs 38.1% vs 50.0%, P < .001) when compared with patients with severe CAP/AspRF+ and severe CAP/AspRF-, respectively. Most patients (>50% in all groups) independent of AspRFs or ACAP received specific or broad-spectrum anti-anaerobic coverage antibiotics.


Hospitalized patients with ACAP or CAP/AspRF+ had similar anaerobic flora compared with patients without aspiration risk factors. Gram-negative bacteria were more prevalent in patients with severe ACAP. Despite having similar microbiological flora between groups, a large proportion of CAP patients received anti-anaerobic antibiotic coverage.


Journal article





GLIMP investigators, Humans, Community-Acquired Infections, Anti-Bacterial Agents, Hospitalization, Risk Factors, Cohort Studies, Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Middle Aged, Female, Male, Respiratory Aspiration


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Publication Info

Marin-Corral, Judith, Sergi Pascual-Guardia, Francesco Amati, Stefano Aliberti, Joan R Masclans, Nilam Soni, Alejandro Rodriguez, Oriol Sibila, et al. (2021). Aspiration Risk Factors, Microbiology, and Empiric Antibiotics for Patients Hospitalized With Community-Acquired Pneumonia. Chest, 159(1). pp. 58–72. 10.1016/j.chest.2020.06.079 Retrieved from

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