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Pneumonia in young adults with asthma: impact on subsequent asthma exacerbations

Authors Pelton SI, Shea KM, Bornheimer R, Sato R, Weycker D

Received 5 January 2019

Accepted for publication 1 March 2019

Published 12 April 2019 Volume 2019:12 Pages 95—99


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Amrita Dosanjh

Stephen I Pelton,1,2 Kimberly M Shea,1 Rebecca Bornheimer,3 Reiko Sato,4 Derek Weycker3

1Department of Epidemiology, Boston University Schools of Medicine and Public Health, Boston, MA, USA; 2Maxwell Finland Laboratories, Boston Medical Center, Boston, MA, USA; 3Policy Analysis Inc. (PAI), Brookline, MA, USA; 4Health Economic & Outcomes Research, Pfizer Inc., Collegeville, PA, USA

Background: Recent studies of community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) have recognized acute cardiac complications—such as myocardial infarction, arrhythmia, or congestive heart failure (CHF)—as frequent complications during the acute process. As well, a prolonged vulnerability to exacerbations of underlying comorbidities—such as CHF and COPD—has been observed following CAP. We hypothesized that young adults with underlying asthma could also be adversely impacted over a prolonged time period following CAP.
Methods: Using a retrospective matched-cohort design and data from a US private healthcare claims repository (>15 M persons annually), we selected all adults 18–49 years of age with evidence of asthma as their only comorbidity for inclusion in the source population. Then, from the source population, we matched one comparison patient to each CAP patient based on index date, age, sex, and selected markers for health status (eg, history of asthma-related healthcare encounters), and evaluated subsequent outpatient and inpatient encounters for asthma exacerbations.
Results: Asthma exacerbations were identified twice as often in the 12 months subsequent to acute CAP. Cumulative incidence proportions for asthma exacerbations requiring hospitalization or emergency department care after 12 months of follow-up were 19.9% for those previously hospitalized with CAP versus 9.0% for matched comparison patients (difference, 10.9%; p<0.001), and were 12.4% for non-hospitalized CAP patients versus 7.7% for matched counterparts (difference, 4.7%; p<0.001).
Conclusion: Our analysis provides further evidence that acute CAP has a prolonged impact on respiratory health.

Keywords: pneumonia, asthma, disease exacerbation, disease progression

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