To determine the frequency and the clinical characteristics of Mycoplasma pneumoniae pneumonia in the elderly.
Analysis of cases of M pneumoniae pneumonia accumulated as part of a prospective study of communityacquired pneumonia.
Sixty-four (4.9%) of 1300 patients had pneumonia due to M pneumoniae. Six (9.3%) of the 64 were 65 years of age or older. None of the elderly patients had a discharge diagnosis of M pneumoniae compared with 21 of those 64 years of age or younger (36%). Sixty-four percent of the patients with M pneumoniae received erythromycin therapy compared with 45% of 1118 of the patients with community-acquired pneumonia. The clinical features of the six elderly patients with M pneumoniae did not allow distinction from other causes of pneumonia. One patient presented with normal pressure pulmonary edema due to infection with both M pneumoniae and respiratory syncytial virus; a second patient had his Salmonella carrier state converted to bacteremia during his episode of M pneumoniae. Three presented as nonspecific pneumonia in the elderly, while one patient had a slowly resolving infection due to a narrowed bronchus. The 58 patients who were 64 years of age or younger demonstrated four previously unrecognized or underemphasized features of M pneumoniae infection—prolonged thrombocytopenia, one patient; recurrent pulmonary hemorrhage, one patient; thrombocytosis, 45% of the patients; and prolonged hospital stay, eight (13.7%) of the 58 patients. Only one patient died (1.5%) and this was a result of Shy-Drager syndrome.
Mycoplasma pneumoniae accounts for 4.9% of community-acquired pneumonia requiring hospitalization, and 9% of these patients were 65 years of age or older. There are no clinical features that distinguish this form of pneumonia from that due to other agents. The mortality rate from this infection is low even in the elderly.(Arch Intern Med. 1993;153:488-494)
Thank you for submitting a comment on this article. It will be reviewed by JAMA Internal Medicine editors. You will be notified when your comment has been published. Comments should not exceed 500 words of text and 10 references.
Do not submit personal medical questions or information that could identify a specific patient, questions about a particular case, or general inquiries to an author. Only content that has not been published, posted, or submitted elsewhere should be submitted. By submitting this Comment, you and any coauthors transfer copyright to the journal if your Comment is posted.
* = Required Field
Disclosure of Any Conflicts of Interest*
Indicate all relevant conflicts of interest of each author below, including all relevant financial interests, activities, and relationships within the past 3 years including, but not limited to, employment, affiliation, grants or funding, consultancies, honoraria or payment, speakers’ bureaus, stock ownership or options, expert testimony, royalties, donation of medical equipment, or patents planned, pending, or issued. If all authors have none, check "No potential conflicts or relevant financial interests" in the box below. Please also indicate any funding received in support of this work. The information will be posted with your response.
Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.
Download citation file:
Web of Science® Times Cited: 52
Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.
More Listings atJAMACareerCenter.com >
Enter your username and email address. We'll send you a link to reset your password.
Enter your username and email address. We'll send instructions on how to reset your password to the email address we have on record.
Athens and Shibboleth are access management services that provide single sign-on to protected resources. They replace the multiple user names and passwords necessary to access subscription-based content with a single user name and password that can be entered once per session. It operates independently of a user's location or IP address. If your institution uses Athens or Shibboleth authentication, please contact your site administrator to receive your user name and password.