Pneumonia Shot Can Save Lives

A team at the University of Alberta has found that hospitalized patients with community-acquired pneumonia are less likely to die or end up in intensive care if they’ve previously received the pneumonia vaccine, according to the Washington Post. The study appeared in the Oct. 8 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

The study involved 3,400 patients who were admitted to six hospitals between 2000 and 2002. Of those 3,400, 22 percent had received the vaccine. Patients who had received the vaccine were less likely to die or be admitted to the intensive care unit than those who hadn’t been vaccinated, 10 percent vs. 21 percent.

“We believe that our results further emphasize the importance of adopting current adult pneumococcal vaccination guidelines, particularly since only 22 percent of our (study) population were vaccinated before their hospitalization and less than 10 percent of eligible patients were vaccinated before hospital discharge,” the study authors concluded.

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