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The Effect of BMI on Community-Acquired Pneumonia Incidence and Mortality in Veterans


This study aimed to assess the effect body mass index (BMI) has on community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) incidence and mortality in the Veteran Healthcare System. A historical cohort of 3,606,564 subjects was identified between fiscal year 2010-2012, and was followed until the end of fiscal year 2015 for the outcomes of CAP and 30-day all-cause mortality post-CAP infection. A total of 210,408 cases of CAP were identified during follow-up. Men who were overweight or obese had a protective effect on CAP incidence, while women were at a slight increased risk. A sub-cohort, made up of those diagnosed with CAP, was analyzed for the association of BMI and 30-day all-cause mortality. For overweight and obese men and women there was a decrease in mortality in the 30-days post-CAP infection, supporting previous findings of the “obesity paradox”. However, new evidence has come to light that may reverse the “obesity paradox” in future studies.

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