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OBJECTIVES: We determined the pulse oximetry benefit in pediatric pneumonia mortality risk stratification and chest-indrawing pneumonia in-hospital mortality risk factors. METHODS: We report the characteristics and in-hospital pneumonia-related mortality of children aged 2-59 months who were included in the Pneumonia Research Partnership to Assess WHO Recommendations dataset. We developed multivariable logistic regression models of chest-indrawing pneumonia to identify mortality risk factors. RESULTS: Among 285,839 children, 164,244 (57.5%) from hospital-based studies were included. Pneumonia case fatality risk (CFR) without pulse oximetry measurement was higher than with measurement (5.8%, 95% confidence interval [CI] 5.6-5.9% vs 2.1%, 95% CI 1.9-2.4%). One in five children with chest-indrawing pneumonia was hypoxemic (19.7%, 95% CI 19.0-20.4%), and the hypoxemic CFR was 10.3% (95% CI 9.1-11.5%). Other mortality risk factors were younger age (either 2-5 months [adjusted odds ratio (aOR) 9.94, 95% CI 6.67-14.84] or 6-11 months [aOR 2.67, 95% CI 1.71-4.16]), moderate malnutrition (aOR 2.41, 95% CI 1.87-3.09), and female sex (aOR 1.82, 95% CI 1.43-2.32). CONCLUSION: Children with a pulse oximetry measurement had a lower CFR. Many children hospitalized with chest-indrawing pneumonia were hypoxemic and one in 10 died. Young age and moderate malnutrition were risk factors for in-hospital chest-indrawing pneumonia-related mortality. Pulse oximetry should be integrated in pneumonia hospital care for children under 5 years.

Original publication





Int J Infect Dis

Publication Date





240 - 250


Chest indrawing, Child, Danger sign, Pneumonia, Pulse oximetry, Under 5