Is sputum evaluation useful for patients with community-acquired pneumonia?
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No high-quality studies specifically address the utility of sputum Gram stain or culture in the assessment or treatment of community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) or nursing home- acquired pneumonia (NHAP). The available evidence suggests that analysis of the sputum adds little to the care or outcomes of patients with CAP (strength of recommendation [SOR]: B, inconsistent results from non-randomized case control, case series, and a systematic review of disease-oriented evidence).
Journal of Family Practice, 54(3) 2005: 279-281.
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