Severe pneumonia

Aetiology and Epidemiology of severe Pneumonia

The 2009 influenza pandemic (1) caused significant mortality and underscored our lack of knowledge in respect of risk determinants and ICU pneumonia outcomes. There are several other important determinant of outcome of influenza infection, including pregnancy, obesity (2) and co-infection (3) with other pathogens, especially bacteria.

We are part of the international INSIGHT network to study influenza and other severe respiratory infections, including the incidence and consequences of coinfection.

Respiratory infections

Respiratory infections account for at least 20% of all intensive care admissions in Australia and New Zealand, yet many questions remain unanswered in these critically ill patients. The influenza pandemic of 2009 also placed a significant strain on Australasian critical care services during the first wave, but this was dependent on geographic location. The aim of the CRE is to identify the etiology of severe respiratory infections and factors that predict severe disease and outcomes.

The CRE collaborates with the NIAID (National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, a component of the National Institutes of Health) funded INSIGHT network, the WHO National Influenza Centre at ICMPR, Westmead Hospital and ANZICS.

Some recent publications of the CRE in these areas include:

(1) Trauer JM, Bandaranayake D, Booy R, Chen M, Cretikos M, Dowse G, Dwyer DE, Greenberg M, Huang Q, Kok J, Khandaker G, Laurie K, Lim V, McVernon J, Walter S, Markey PG. Comparisons of the impact of A(H1N1)pdm 2009 influenza in the Southern Hemisphere winter of 2009: a pooled analysis of seroepidemiological data

(2) Kok J, Blyth CC, Foo H, Bailey MJ, Pilcher DV, Webb SA, Seppelt IM, Dwyer DE, Iredell JR. Viral pneumonitis is increased in obese patients during the first wave of pandemic A(H1N1) 2009 virus. PLoS ONE 2013; 8: e55631

(3) Blyth CC, Webb SA, Kok J, Dwyer DE, van Hal SJ, Foo H, Ginn AN, Kesson AM, Seppelt I, Iredell JR. The impact of bacterial and viral co-infection in severe influenza 2013