Community Acquired Pneumonia

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Mycoplasma pneumonia is a common cause of pneumonia in older children.

Most pediatric pneumonia is viral. The more common “Typical” bacterial pathogens seen in epidemiology studies are Streptococcus pneumoniae, Group A Streptococcus and Staphylococcus aureus.

Mycoplasma pneumoniae is identified commonly and more so as children get older. In the 10-17 year old age group it was the most commonly identified pathogen in an epidemiology study of children admitted for pneumonia.

The IDSA makes a weak recommendation for testing for Mycoplasma to direct therapy if it is available in a clinically relevant time frame. Older children with symptoms compatible with an atypical infection can be treated with a macrolide antibiotic in the outpatient setting.

This is nicely graphically represented in Jain et al below (Link to table)


Bradley JS, Byington CL, Shah SS, Alverson B, Carter ER, Harrison C, Kaplan SL, Mace SE, McCracken GH Jr, Moore MR, St Peter SD, Stockwell JA, Swanson JT; Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society and the Infectious Diseases Society of America. The management of community-acquired pneumonia in infants and children older than 3 months of age: clinical practice guidelines by the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society and the Infectious Diseases Society of America. Clin Infect Dis. 2011 Oct;53(7):e25-76. PMID: 21880587

Jain S, Williams DJ, Arnold SR, Ampofo K, Bramley AM, Reed C, Stockmann C, Anderson EJ, Grijalva CG, Self WH, Zhu Y, Patel A, Hymas W, Chappell JD, Kaufman RA, Kan JH, Dansie D, Lenny N, Hillyard DR, Haynes LM, Levine M, Lindstrom S, Winchell JM, Katz JM, Erdman D, Schneider E, Hicks LA, Wunderink RG, Edwards KM, Pavia AT, McCullers JA, Finelli L; CDC EPIC Study Team. Community-acquired pneumonia requiring hospitalization among U.S. children. N Engl J Med. 2015 Feb 26;372(9):835-45. PMID: 25714161