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Acute respiratory infections in persons with spinal cord injury


Burns SP



Publication Info:

Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Clinics of North America, 18(2):203-16, v-vi


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.

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