Acute respiratory infections in persons with spinal cord injury

Phys Med Rehabil Clin N Am. 2007 May;18(2):203-16, v-vi. doi: 10.1016/j.pmr.2007.02.001.


Respiratory disorders are the leading cause of death for persons with both acute and chronic spinal cord injury (SCI), and much of the morbidity and mortality associated with respiratory disorders is related to acute respiratory infections. Pneumonia is the best recognized respiratory infection associated with mortality in this population. Recent evidence supports some management strategies that differ from those recommended for the general population. Upper respiratory tract infections and acute bronchitis may be precipitating factors in the development of pneumonia or ventilatory failure in patients with chronic SCI. This review emphasizes management principles for treatment and prevention of respiratory infections in persons with SCI.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Community-Acquired Infections / epidemiology
  • Community-Acquired Infections / therapy
  • Cross Infection / epidemiology
  • Decision Making
  • Humans
  • Pneumonia / epidemiology
  • Pneumonia / therapy
  • Pseudomonas Infections / epidemiology
  • Respiratory Tract Infections / epidemiology*
  • Risk Factors
  • Spinal Cord Injuries / epidemiology*