Pneumococcal pneumonia – a history based on chapters from the first edition (1950) and the latest edition (2018) of Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine
Streptococcus pneumoniae remains an important cause of pneumonia-related morbidity and mortality, especially in children and older patients. Although routinely encountered in clinical practice, many clinicians do not know the historical developments in the management of pneumococcal pneumonia and their impact on public health interventions. Reviewing the evolution of clinical information about pneumococcal pneumonia can provide insight into the scientific and technological advances in medicine. Specifically, the development of antibiotics and the development of vaccines against pneumococci were important advances in modern infectious disease control. In addition, the emergence of antibiotic resistant bacteria marks an important development and highlights the need for new antibiotics, antibiotic stewardship, and effective vaccination. To illustrate these ideas, we discuss the evolution of clinical information about pneumococcal pneumonia between the 1st edition (published in 1950) and 20th edition (published in 2018) of Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine. This comparison outlines the important advances in the prevention and treatment of pneumonia and provides the background for understanding future challenges in identifying, treating, and preventing bacterial infections, such as pneumococcal pneumonia.
Keywords: Pneumococcal pneumonia, Harrison’s Principles of Internal Medicine, antibiotics, vaccination, serotypes
Copyright (c) 2021 Jonathan Kopel, Ali Hakim, Kenneth Nugent, Steven Berk
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