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The role of lung ultrasound in the diagnosis of pneumonia in acutely ill patients
Critical Ultrasound Journal volume 6, Article number: A2 (2014)
The differential diagnosis of patients in the emergency department who show symptoms of sepsis and suspected pneumonia may be difficult because of the low sensitivity and specificity of supine chest X rays (SCXR) and physical examination.
A retrospective assessment of the usefulness of lung ultrasound (LU) in the diagnosis of pneumonia in patients with signs and symptoms of sepsis and respiratory disease.
Patients and methods
2 groups of patients were considered:
Group A: 22 patients with a positive first SCXR (SCXR1) for pneumonia
Group B: 18 patients with a negative SCXR1 for pneumonia, but who were subsequently diagnosed with pneumonia during their hospital stay following a second SCXR (SCXR2) or CT.
Lung ultrasound examination was performed within 24 hours of admission, searching for direct and indirect echographical signs of pneumonia: focal B lines (FBL), pleural effusion (PE) and images of lung consolidation (LC).
See table 1.
In our observational study, LU showed high sensitivity in the diagnosis of pneumonia:
95% in patients already diagnosed using SCXR, and 100 % of early diagnosis of pneumonia in patients whose diagnosis was subsequently confirmed during hospitalization.
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Biancardi, M., D’Agostino, B. & Bonfardeci, C. The role of lung ultrasound in the diagnosis of pneumonia in acutely ill patients. Crit Ultrasound J 6 (Suppl 2), A2 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1186/2036-7902-6-S2-A2
- Emergency Department
- Hospital Stay
- Differential Diagnosis
- Early Diagnosis