[Secondary lung diseases in patients with nasotracheal intubation. Role of nosocomial sinusitis]

P Meyer, J M Guérin, Y Habib, C Lévy
Annales Françaises D'anesthèsie et de Rèanimation 1988, 7 (1): 26-30
Nosocomial pneumonia is a frequent infectious complication in ICU patients. All the patients with prolonged nasotracheal intubation presenting with nosocomial pneumonia according to Salata's criteria were examined for sinusitis in the prospective study. Diagnosis was confirmed via CT-scan views and transnasal sinus puncture. In eleven nasally intubated patients, CT-scan views showed air fluid levels and multiple sinus involvement. Bacteriological studies isolated the same gram negative bacilli in both sinus and bronchial aspirates. In four cases, a polymicrobial sinusitis was found with a single organism predominant. This predominant germ was always found in bronchial aspirate. Recovery from pneumonia was obtained only after sinus drainage. Treatment included removing the nasal tubes, or performing tracheostomy and systemic antibiotics. One patient required surgical maxillary sinus drainage after failure of medical management. The occurrence of nosocomial pneumonia in nasotracheally intubated patients should lead physicians to explore the paranasal sinuses. Sinus CT-scan views should be routinely obtained in the assessment of pulmonary sepsis in patients with prolonged nasotracheal intubation. Persistent or ignored nosocomial sinusitis in such circumstances could be a major source of treatment failure.

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