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Common Causes and Symptoms of Pneumonia

Dr. Ashutosh Kumar 92% (238 ratings)
MD - General Medicine, DTM & H
Internal Medicine Specialist, Motihari  •  8 years experience
Common Causes and Symptoms of Pneumonia

Pneumonia is a lung infection that can be potentially fatal if it is not treated on time. This disease may cause fever, cough, cold and congestion and is known to clear within two to three weeks with bed rest and proper remedies at home. Yet, it is best to have it checked by a doctor, especially if it happens to affect a child. The causes of symptoms of this condition are as follows:

Symptoms: The most common symptom of pneumonia is a painful cough with which you will end up throwing out lots of mucus. This mucus or sputum usually comes from the lungs. The patient may also have fever and may experience shortness of breath and shallow breathing on several occasions. Further, chills that cause chattering teeth and shivering, can also afflict the patient, especially during the night. Chest pain is also a common symptom of this condition due to the excessive and persistent coughing, laboured breathing and congestion. Due to this, the patient may also experience accelerated heartbeat and a pounding heart. Nausea, weakness, fatigue and loose motions are some of the other symptoms of this condition.

Causes

  • Germs: Germs finding their way into the lungs is a sure shot way of contracting pneumonia. These bacteria are most likely to strike when you have just recovered from a flu, cold or fever following which your immunity is pretty low.
  • Chronic Ailments: Patients who are suffering from chronic ailments like asthma, heart disease, diabetes and even cancer, are at risk of getting pneumonia, in which case immediate treatment will be required so that it does not become a fatality.
  • Bacteria: While the specific bacteria cannot be diagnosed with the help of tests, the most common bacteria that cause this condition are known as Streptococcus Pneumoniae. Other bacteria that can cause this disease include the Mycoplasma Pneumoniae which can cause a more mild form of pneumonia known as walking pneumonia.
  • Virus: The viruses that cause influenza like virus A and B can also cause this disease along with the respiratory syncytial virus or RSV. These affect the nose, lungs and throat.
  • Immunity: When your immune system is impaired or when you have just recovered from a bout of moderate to serious ailments, this virus or bacteria is most rampant and can afflict you. In case the patient is suffering from AIDS or other fungal infections, the risk of contracting pneumonia is heightened.

This is a contagious disease that may be caused when you breathe the same infected air as another patient with the same disease. It can also follow viral diseases like chickenpox and measles.

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