Aspiration Pneumonia

Aspiration of oral bacteria is associated with pneumonia, particularly in bedridden and hospitalized patients. Consider the following:

  • 83% of patients who develop nosocomial pneumonias are mechanically ventilated.
  • Oral care protocol interventions led to an 89.7% reduction in ventilator associated pneumonia.
  • Oral hygiene strategies in hospitalized and nursing home populations also can reduce the incidence of pneumonia.
John Foxx/
John Foxx/


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Hutchins K, et al. Ventilator-associated pneumonia and oral care: A successful quality improvement project. Am J Infect Control 2009; (37):590-597.

Scannapieco FA. Pneumonia in nonambulatory patients, Journal of the American Dental Association 2006; 137(10 supplement):21S-25S.

Shay K, Scannapieco FA, Terpenning MS, et al. Nosocomial pneumonia and oral health. Spec Care Dentistry 2005; 25(4):179-187.

Scannapieco FA and Shay K, Oral health disparities in older adults: Oral bacteria, inflammation, and aspiration pneumonia. Dental Clinics of North America. 2014; 58(4): 771-782

Sørensen RT et al. Dysphagia screening and intensified oral hygiene reduce pneumonia after stroke. J Neurosci. 2013; 45(3): 139-146.

van der Maarel-Wierink CD et al. Oral health care and aspiration pneumonia in frail older people: a systematic literature review. Gerodontology. 2013; 30(1): 3-9.