Prevalence and risk factors of suppurative complications in children with pneumonia

Acta Paediatr. 2010 Jun;99(6):861-6. doi: 10.1111/j.1651-2227.2010.01734.x. Epub 2010 Feb 19.


Aim: To identify the baseline characteristics associated with suppurative complications in children with community-acquired primary pneumonia.

Methods: A retrospective study included all children from 28 days to 15 years old, who presented with community-acquired pneumonia at two French hospitals from 1995 to 2003. Complicated pneumonia was defined by the presence of empyema and/or lung abscess.

Results: Of 767 children with community-acquired pneumonia, 90 had suppurative complications: 83 cases of pleural empyema and seven cases of lung abscess. The mean prevalence of complicated pneumonia was 3% during the 1995-1998 period, and then steadily increased following a linear trend to reach 23% in 2003. Children with complicated pneumonia were older and had a longer symptomatic period preceding hospitalization. They were more likely to receive antibiotics, especially aminopenicillins (p < 0.01), and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, especially ibuprofen (p < 0.001). In multivariable analysis, ibuprofen was the only preadmission therapy that was independently associated with complicated pneumonia [adjusted OR = 2.57 (1.51-4.35)].

Conclusion: This study confirms an association between the use of prehospital ibuprofen and suppurative pneumonic complications.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Age Factors
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / adverse effects*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Community-Acquired Infections
  • Empyema / epidemiology
  • Empyema / etiology*
  • Female
  • France / epidemiology
  • Hospitalization
  • Humans
  • Ibuprofen / adverse effects*
  • Infant
  • Lung Abscess / epidemiology
  • Lung Abscess / etiology*
  • Male
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Pneumonia / complications*
  • Pneumonia / drug therapy
  • Pneumonia / microbiology
  • Prevalence
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Factors


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal
  • Ibuprofen