Update of the treatment of nosocomial pneumonia in the ICU

Crit Care. 2020 Jun 29;24(1):383. doi: 10.1186/s13054-020-03091-2.


In accordance with the recommendations of, amongst others, the Surviving Sepsis Campaign and the recently published European treatment guidelines for hospital-acquired pneumonia (HAP) and ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP), in the event of a patient with such infections, empirical antibiotic treatment must be appropriate and administered as early as possible. The aim of this manuscript is to update treatment protocols by reviewing recently published studies on the treatment of nosocomial pneumonia in the critically ill patients that require invasive respiratory support and patients with HAP from hospital wards that require invasive mechanical ventilation. An interdisciplinary group of experts, comprising specialists in anaesthesia and resuscitation and in intensive care medicine, updated the epidemiology and antimicrobial resistance and established clinical management priorities based on patients' risk factors. Implementation of rapid diagnostic microbiological techniques available and the new antibiotics recently added to the therapeutic arsenal has been reviewed and updated. After analysis of the categories outlined, some recommendations were suggested, and an algorithm to update empirical and targeted treatment in critically ill patients has also been designed. These aspects are key to improve VAP outcomes because of the severity of patients and possible acquisition of multidrug-resistant organisms (MDROs).

Keywords: Ceftazidime-avibactam; Ceftolozane-tazobactam; HAP; KPC; Nosocomial pneumonia; PCR; Pseudomonas aeruginosa; VAP.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use
  • Critical Illness / epidemiology
  • Critical Illness / therapy
  • Guidelines as Topic
  • Healthcare-Associated Pneumonia / epidemiology
  • Healthcare-Associated Pneumonia / physiopathology
  • Healthcare-Associated Pneumonia / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Intensive Care Units / organization & administration
  • Intensive Care Units / trends*
  • Pneumonia, Ventilator-Associated / epidemiology
  • Pneumonia, Ventilator-Associated / physiopathology
  • Pneumonia, Ventilator-Associated / therapy
  • Risk Factors


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents