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Pneumonia - Symptom, Treatment And Causes

Pneumonia is a malady that affects billions of people across the globe every day. This disease is one the 10 top causes of death among adults when this malady is combined with flu. Pneumonia is an inflammation or infection of the lungs. This infection can affect just one section of your lungs and is known as lobal pneumonia or it can even affect sections in both the lungs, when it is known as multilobal pneumonia.

When you have pneumonia, the air sack inside your lungs slowly gets filled up with pus and also other liquids, thus reducing the pathway of oxygen, which finds trouble reaching the lungs. People who are at a higher risk with this illness are anyone who is over 65 years old. Also, people with suppressed immune system, with heart and lung disease, people suffering from alcoholism, kidney failure, HIV, diabetes are high risk patients of this disease. Children who are below 2 years of age are also at risk once they get infected with pneumonia.

Pneumonia can occur for a number of reasons. Unlike other most common diseases, which have a definite cause (strep throat is caused by streptococcus bacteria, flu is caused by influenza virus), this diseases can be caused by multiple factors like bacteria, fungus, viruses, mycoplasmas or even chemicals. Generally, infected with the flu virus and other respiratory maladies, gets infected with this disease. It’s like this, when any flu patient’s body gets weakened by the flu virus, bacteria invades the lungs and causes pneumonia. In certain cases the pneumonia germs get passed from one person to another, whereby his disease spreads through the air. This last stated cause of spreading this disease is most common with mycoplasma pneumonia. Once you don’t fall into the high risk group, very simple measures on your part can protect yourself from pneumonia. These protective measures are like washing your hands, getting your flu vaccine at the right time, avoiding people who are seriously ill and others.

Although, the flu vaccine doesn’t stop you from getting infected with pneumonia (as it’s only a protection against influenza), but then again, it also provides some protection from this disease, as pneumonia is often a medical complication which accompanies the flu. So if you can avoid flu, it’s natural you run a lesser risk of getting affected with this disease.

The pneumonia vaccine for children is PCV13 that is provided as a part of the recommended vaccine for all children who are under the age of two. This vaccine protects the children from 13 pneumococcal bacteria. There is also another vaccine PPSV23 available for children (beyond 2 years) and adults and is advised for people who have chronic medical issues, which puts them in a high risk zone, like all adults who are over the age of 65.

Can't be cured Require medical diagnosis Lab test sometimes required Short-term: resolves within days to weeks Spread through the air or contaminated surfaces
Patients who gets infected with pneumonia suffer from painful and recurrent coughs which can bring a lot of discomfort. Have very high fever is another pertinent symptom that affects people suffering from pneumonia. Difficulty in breathing and at time painful breathing is a symptom of pneumonia, the difficulty generally occurs when people inhale while infected with this disease.

Popular Health Tips

Pneumonia - Signs You Must Never Ignore!

Dr. Virendra Kumar Raju 91% (10 ratings)
MBBS, MD - Internal Medicine
Internal Medicine Specialist, Delhi
Pneumonia - Signs You Must Never Ignore!
Pneumonia is a type of lung infection that may affect one or both lungs. In this condition the air sacs, also known as alveoli, fill with pus or fluid which makes it difficult to breathe. Moreover, pneumonia is known to cause inflammation in the air sacs. This disease may range from mild to life threatening and the severity depends on cause of inflammation, the organism fostering your infection, your age and general health. Symptoms: Most common symptoms associated with the condition are: 1. Chest pain 2. Difficulty in breathing 3. Shaking chills 4. Rapid heartbeat 5. Fever 6. Rapid breathing 7. Dry cough 8. Vomiting 9. Wheezing 10. Nausea 11. Muscle aches 12. Bluish skin tone due to oxygen deficiency 13. Blood in sputum i.e. coughed up mucus 14. Labored breathing 15. Confusion 16. High fever Causes: 1. Bacteria- One of the most common causes of pneumonia is the bacteria named as Streptococcus pneumoniae. This type of pneumonia may occur after you have had flu or a cold, or maybe even on its own. Moreover, it may affect only one part of the lung i.e. the lobe and is also known as lobar pneumonia. 2. Viruses- Viruses are one of the main reasons why children below 5 years of age suffer from pneumonia. Viruses that cause pneumonia may also cause cold or flu. Viral pneumonia is usually mild and may be treated at home itself. However, in some cases, it may be very severe and life-threatening. 3. Mycoplasmas- Mycoplasma is a type of bacteria that doesn't have a cell wall around the cell membrane which is why they are usually unaffected by most antibiotics which target cell wall synthesis. The symptoms of pneumonia caused by mycoplasmas are mild and the patient does not require bed rest. This type of pneumonia is known as 'Walking Pneumonia'. 4. Fungi- People with weakened immune systems or chronic health problems usually develop pneumonia due to fungi. You may also develop fungal pneumonia by inhaling large doses of it mainly found in soil or bird droppings.
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Know More About Pneumonia

Dr. Hardik Thakker 95% (444 ratings)
MD - Internal Medicine, MBBS
Internal Medicine Specialist, Mumbai
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Causes and symptoms of Pneumonia
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How To Protect Your Child From Pneumonia?

Dr. Piyush Goel 92% (21 ratings)
MBBS, MD - Pulmonary Medicine, FNB-Critical Care and Medicine
Pulmonologist, Gurgaon
How To Protect Your Child From Pneumonia?
Pneumonia is a serious ailment in the lungs which can affect people of all ages even though kids are most vulnerable to this. According to the estimates of the World Health Organization, over 160 million children across the globe get affected by pneumonia every year out of whom 20 million have to be hospitalized, and 2 million die. Who is most susceptible to pneumonia? Children who are exposed to the smoke of tobacco or have poor nutrition, asthma, high blood sugar, cold, flu, poor shelter, HIV infection and lack of proper breastfeeding are at risk. Also, if children don t get an adequate amount of zinc in the diet, then they can get affected by pneumonia. As the germs reach the lungs, this organ becomes infected and inflamed with a buildup of fluid. It can lead to breathing problems which can make inhibit the entrance of oxygen in the bloodstream. This prevents the cells in the body in performing their normal functions and infections cannot be flushed out of the body. What are the common signs and symptoms of pneumonia? The common symptoms of pneumonia include vomiting, chills, chest pain, rapid breathing and shortness of breath, chest retractions during respiration, fatigue, high temperature, nausea, muscle weakness, wheezing and coughing of green and slightly bloody mucus. It may also include unconsciousness, lethargy, convulsions and also feeding problems in infants. There is a type of pneumonia that does not show any major sign but which may interfere with daily functions is referred to as walking pneumonia. How can pneumonia in children be prevented? Having healthy habits and practising good hygiene is the best way to avoid pneumonia. Children must be encouraged to clean the hands frequently, coughing or sneezing into the elbow or sleeves instead of palms and to avoid interaction with people who are affected by any infection and flu. As a parent, you should provide proper nutrition to help your child have strong immunity and make sure that they get sufficient rest to ward off infection. You should not smoke in front of your kids as passive smoking is dangerous and help them stay away from pollutants. You should ensure that your child is immunized as per prescribed schedule. Also, you should know about the warning signs of pneumonia and other ailments of the lungs which include fast breathing, frequent coughing, and difficulty in breathing to detect pneumonia in its early stages. And take them to visit the doctor as soon as you observe the signs. When it comes to an infant, you should breastfeed him/her as mother s milk contains all the vital nutrients, hormones, antioxidants and antibodies that your child requires to ward off infections including pneumonia. Thus, being aware you can protect your child from contracting the disease.
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Thoracic Ultrasound - What You Can Expect After Undergoing It?

Dr. Mool Chand Gupta 92% (33895 ratings)
Pulmonologist, Faridabad
Thoracic Ultrasound - What You Can Expect After Undergoing It?
When your doctor suspects of the presence of extra fluid in your lungs, you might be advised for a thoracic ultrasound. What is a thoracic ultrasound and why do you need it? With a thoracic ultrasound, your doctor will be able to look at everything in the thoracic cavity and can know if your lungs, heart, and other structures in the chest are working fine. The pulmonologists can efficiently determine the lung condition even in critically ill patients using a non-invasive ultrasound technique. And, since the method is based on sound, there is no risk of exposure to potentially harmful ionizing radiation or nephron-toxic contrast dye in this case. Hence, a thoracic ultrasound has become the most preferred technique for conducting a preliminary examination or to further check and confirm a finding noted using other imaging techniques for thoracic diseases. Reasons to have a chest ultrasound The doctor usually refer an ultrasound when he or she can feel that there is some extra amount of fluid in your chest. The ultrasound can tell the physician the reason behind the deposition of excess liquid. The ultrasound would help detect the type of fluid that is present in the chest, whether it is exudate that is caused due to inflammation, an infection, or lung cancer, or whether it is transudate that is a leakage from the lymph nodes or the blood vessel. It determines the movement of the diaphragm. Chest ultrasound can be done in conjunction with other examinations like CT scan, MRI to evaluate the condition of the chest. It has to be noted that, in certain circumstances such as severe obesity and barium in your esophagus, the procedure can give an inaccurate result. Hence, it is always advisable to talk with the health care provider and share your complete medical history before undergoing this procedure to prevent such occurrences. After a Thoracic Ultrasound After the results of the ultrasound are received, the doctor can detect what the condition of your chest is at the moment. Your doctor will also confirm if the lungs have collapsed or if there is water in the lungs, or excess fluid has deposited into the lungs. Ultrasound can also reveal if you have pneumonia. A diagnosis like this does not take a long duration, and thus the ultrasound plays a significant role in expediting the treatment process. There are no hard and fast regulations to follow after the ultrasound. The physician may recommend few instructions depending on your situation. In typical cases, there is no special preparation like fasting is required and you need not be sedated during the ultrasound as well. A safe and painless method to detect the condition of the chest and the respiratory organs and the blood flow through the organs in your chest, a thoracic ultrasound is a preferred procedure that can help your doctor to diagnose your condition and decide upon the treatment method.
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6 Ways to Prevent Pneumonia!

Dr. Hardik Thakker 95% (444 ratings)
MD - Internal Medicine, MBBS
Internal Medicine Specialist, Mumbai
6 Ways to Prevent Pneumonia!
Pneumonia is a lung infection that affects one or both lungs. It can be triggered by bacteria, virus or fungi and causes inflammation in the lung s air sacs that make it difficult to breathe. Pneumonia can range from a mild infection to being a life threatening condition. This severity depends on the age and general health of the patient along with the cause of the inflammation and type of infection. Pneumonia can be classified in many ways. There are three main types of pneumonia based on the type of microbe that causes the infection; bacterial, viral and mycoplasmic pneumonia. Bacterial Pneumonia: Streptococcus pneumonia is the most common cause of bacterial pneumonia. It can affect people at any age and can develop on its own or be triggered by flu. A weak immune system increases the risk of suffering from this condition. Breathlessness and pain while breathing are some of the symptoms associated with this type of pneumonia. Viral Pneumonia: When it comes to young children and the elderly, pneumonia is often caused by respiratory viruses. This type of pneumonia is short lived but the virus that triggers the infection can be fatal. Viral pneumonia can be extremely harmful to pregnant women and individuals with heart or lung issues. Mycoplasma pneumonia: This is also known as atypical or walking pneumonia. It affects people of all age groups but is commonly seen in cases where the patient is below 40 years of age. Mycoplasma pneumonia cases are usually mild with a persistent cough being the most prominent symptom. Pneumonia is not always caused by microbes. Aspiration pneumonia can be contacted by inhaling a foreign object such as food, drinks or regurgitated food into the lungs. This type of pneumonia affects the elderly and people under sedation or anesthesia. Along with breathing difficulties, it also causes a decreased gag reflex and difficulty swallowing food. Though it is not possible to completely prevent pneumonia, the risks of contacting this disease can be easily lowered. Some of the steps you could take to lower your chance of suffering from this disease are: Avoid close contact with people suffering from viral infections like flu, colds, etc. Wash your hands often to prevent the spreading of viruses and bacteria Stop smoking and avoid exposure to second hand smoke Get vaccinated against the bacteria that cause pneumonia Get vaccinated against flu to prevent seasonal colds Exercise regularly and follow a healthy diet
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Popular Questions & Answers

How do I become healthy and fit. Long days ago I am suffered by disease of pneumonia. please help me.

Dt. Dharani Krishnan 89% (71 ratings)
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Dietitian/Nutritionist, Chennai
Do breathing exercises regularly. Please train yourself under a good instructor. Take medical advice for Pneumonia. Take a lot of protein foods such as egg, dhals, whole pulses.
1 person found this helpful

My daughter (age-3&1/2 year) is undergoing treatment of hydro pneumonia thorax. She has got VATS on 24.12.2017 due to severe pneumonia. Today night vomiting has started with stomach pain. linezolid 100 mg is continue since last three weeks.

Dr. Shriganesh Diliprao Deshmukh 88% (1664 ratings)
International Academy of Classical Homeopathy, BHMS
Homeopath, Pune
For vomiting take Ars alb 3c 4tims day for 10days Nux vom 12c 4tims day for 10days Sulph 12c 4tims day for 10days For pneumonia u need detailed case taking

What are the symptoms of pneumonia? How should we take care of yourself with this disease?

Dr. Jayvirsinh Chauhan 97% (6881 ratings)
MD - Homeopathy, BHMS
Homeopath, Vadodara
Chest Pain, coughing, fever, breathing problems etc... You have to take proper treatment immediately...and follow the instructions as given by the doctor..

Presently my mother having second time attacked by severe pneumonia and have consolidation in right lung with fibrous, but after 20 days in hospitalisation breathing problem still persists. Is there in any life threated? Or Is it normalize in the summer season?

Dr. Jayvirsinh Chauhan 97% (6881 ratings)
MD - Homeopathy, BHMS
Homeopath, Vadodara
It depends on her general health whether it is serious or not. But if there is breathing problems then it should be taken seriously.

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