Klebsiella pneumoniae must enter the respiratory tract to cause pneumonia, the blood to cause a bloodstream infection and end-organ damage (such as liver abscess or CNS infection), or must enter devitalized tissues to cause infection of burns and wounds.
K. pneumoniae associated pneumonia is typically caused by aspiration of oropharyngeal microbes into the lower respiratory tract. The pneumonia caused by this organism is sometimes associated with thick, bloody, mucoid sputum called “currant jelly” sputum, but can also cause lung abscesses and pneumonia that can be difficult to distinguish from those caused by other pathogens. Klebsiella infections are more likely in immunosuppressed patients, such as diabetics, alcoholics, patients who are intubated, and others.
Klebsiella pneumoniae bacteria can be spread through person-to-person contact (for example, from patient to patient via the contaminated hands of healthcare personnel, or other persons) or, less commonly, by contamination of the environment. The bacteria are not spread through the air.
Klebsiella pneumoniae is a very common pathogen that is encountered by many health care providers. Other than being a hospital-acquired pathogen that causes several infections such as urinary tract, nosocomial pneumonia and intraabdominal infections, Pneumonia has been identified as a community-acquired infection with fluctuating prevalence. Strong correlation has been established between the demographic and geographic distribution among world populations and the incidents of community-acquired infections caused by K. pneumoniae. K. pneumoniae has been considered a respiratory pathogen that causes Pneumonia, the sysmptoms include: toxic presentation with sudden onset, high fever, and hemoptysis. Diagnosis through chest radiograph looks for abnormalities such as bulging interlobar fissure and cavitary abscesses. Over the years the contribution of K. pneumoniae to the total community-acquired cases of Pneumonia has severely declined, while its contribution to other disease states increased. Community Acquired K. pneumoniae has been responsible for increased number of bacteremic liver abscess cases, especially in central and far Asia. Patients with Klebsiella liver abscess also showed higher rates of occurrence for the following complications: pulmonary emboli or abscess, brain abscess, pyogenic meningitis, endophthalmitis, prostatic abscess, osteomyelitis, septic arthritis, or psoas abscess. It is important to note that the rates of infections caused by community-acquired K. pneumoniae vary among world populations