Questions About Your Symptoms
Bacterial pneumonia, which is the most common form, tends to be more serious than other types of pneumonia, with symptoms that require medical care. The symptoms of bacterial pneumonia can develop gradually or suddenly. Fever may rise as high as a dangerous 105 degrees F, with profuse sweating and rapidly increased breathing and pulse rate. Lips and nailbeds may have a bluish color due to lack of oxygen in the blood. A patient’s mental state may be confused or delirious.
The symptoms of viral pneumonia usually develop over a period of several days. Early symptoms are similar to influenza symptoms: fever, a dry cough, headache, muscle pain, and weakness. Within a day or two, the symptoms typically get worse, with increasing cough, shortness of breath and muscle pain. There may be a high fever and there may be blueness of the lips.
Symptoms may vary in certain populations. Newborns and infants may not show any signs of the infection. Or, they may vomit, have a fever and cough, or appear restless, sick, or tired and without energy. Older adults and people who have serious illnesses or weak immune systems may have fewer and milder symptoms. They may even have a lower than normal temperature. Older adults who have pneumonia sometimes have sudden changes in mental awareness. For individuals that already have a chronic lung disease, those symptoms may worsen.
When to call a doctor
Walking Pneumonia Vs Bronchitis Symptoms
Both bronchitis and walking pneumonia have similar symptoms, but the two diseases are not the same. Bronchitis affects the bronchial tubes, not the small airways of the lungs.
Bronchitis symptoms may include:
- runny, stuffy nose
- shortness of breath
The main difference is that the recovery time tends to be shorter with acute bronchitis than with pneumonia. But recovering from chronic bronchitis may take a long time.
When Would I Need To Be Hospitalized For Pneumonia
If your case of pneumonia is more severe, you may need tostay in the hospital for treatment. Hospital treatments may include:
- Fluids, antibiotics and other medicines given through an IV
- Breathing treatments and exercises to help loosen mucus
People most likely to be hospitalized are those who are most frail and/or at increased risk, including:
- Babies and young children
- People with weakened immune systems
- People with health conditions that affect the heart and lungs
It may take six to eight weeks to return to a normal level of functioning and well-being if youve been hospitalized with pneumonia.
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Does Your Child Need To See A Doctor About Stomach Pain
You should take your child to see your GP if your child:
- complains of severe pain in the tummy or it wakes them from sleep
- has tummy pain that doesnt go away, or that keeps coming and going
- is unwell or has a fever in addition to the pain
- complains that the pain gets worse when they move
- has diarrhoea or vomiting that doesnt go away
- is losing weight or has pain that affects their energy levels.
Take your child to a hospital emergency department straight away if your child has:
- bloody or green vomit
Choosing The Right Antibiotic
Dozens of antibiotics are available for treating pneumonia, but selecting the best drug is sometimes difficult. People with pneumonia need an antibiotic that is effective against the organism causing the disease. When the organism is unknown, “empiric therapy” is given, meaning the doctor chooses which antibiotic is likely to work based on factors such as the person’s age, health, and severity of the illness.
In adults, the choice of antibiotic therapy depends on the severity of infection and site of care. In all cases, the more quickly antibiotic therapy is started once the diagnosis is made, the better the outcomes. In most cases, the organism causing the pneumonia will not be known before antibiotic therapy is started, so the doctor must choose an antibiotic regimen based on history and symptoms. Later, the therapy may be altered when more information becomes available. To determine the appropriate antibiotic, the doctor must first answer a number of questions:
Once an antibiotic has been chosen, there are still difficulties:
- Individuals respond differently to the same antibiotic, depending on their age, health, size, and other factors.
- People can be allergic to certain antibiotics, thus requiring alternatives.
- People may have strains of bacteria that are resistant to certain antibiotics.
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What Are The Signs Of Pneumonia In Children
When children have pneumonia, they can experience the same symptoms asadults including high fever, cough, difficulty breathing and pain in the chest,but they may also complain of stomach pain, ear pain, have a decreased appetiteand be more tired or irritable than usual. If a child has “walkingpneumonia” their symptoms may be milder and can appear like a cold. Someinfants may not appear to have any symptoms beyond being restless and adecreased appetite. In extreme cases of pneumonia, infants and small childrenmay have bluish fingernails, toenails, lips and mouth.
Signs Of Walking Pneumonia
Walking pneumonia or atypical pneumonia is a bacterial infection that mostly occurs in the lower, but may also affect the upper, respiratory tract. The condition is less severe than other types of pneumonia, and the symptoms are treatable with rest and over-the-counter medications. Many people confuse walking pneumonia with the common flu because they have nearly identical symptoms, and though the former often lasts longer, it generally resolves within a few weeks at most. Usually, symptoms start to develop within two weeks of exposure, though in some cases, the bacteria can incubate for up to a month.
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What Increases Your Risk Factors For Walking Pneumonia
Like pneumonia, the risk for developing walking pneumonia is higher if you are:
- over age of 65 years old
- 2 years old or younger
Since walking pneumonia tends to be mild, some people with the illness choose not to get a formal diagnosis. But other serious diseases can cause symptoms that look like walking pneumonia. If symptoms continue to worsen after a few days, consider checking in with a healthcare professional for a diagnosis and treatment.
Treatment for walking pneumonia depends on whats causing the disease. Walking pneumonia from bacteria can be treated with antibiotics. A healthcare professional may use antiviral medications to treat cases caused by viruses.
For very mild cases of walking pneumonia, treatment may simply involve managing symptoms at home and resting.
How Do You Treat Pneumonia
Treatment for pneumonia depends on the cause. If pneumonia is caused bya bacterial infection, antibiotics will be prescribed to kill the harmfulbacteria. If pneumonia is caused by a viral infection, time and restare best for recovery. Fever reducing medications and cough medicationscan help relieve symptoms and aid sleep.
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Why Does It Hurt Below Your Sternum
The sternum or breastbone is at the center of the chest and when you feel pain below it, some type of disorder in the abdomen may be present. Such pain may be mild or moderate or severe. Symptoms and treatments may depend on the specific cause and tissues involved. Read on to learn different causes of pain below sternum and how you can deal with each condition.
Is Pneumonia Treated Any Differently In Children
Essentially no. Just like adults, bacterial causes of pneumonia in children may be treated with antibiotics. Antibiotics are not used to treat pneumonia caused by viruses. Flu-related pneumonia may be treated with antiviral medicine if caught early in the course of illness. Most cases of pneumonia are treated with comfort care measures that ease symptoms. These may include:
- Drinking more fluids.
- Getting more rest.
- Taking over-the-counter medicines for cough and acetaminophen for fever. Be sure to check with your healthcare provider or pharmacist if you have any questions or concerns about giving medicines to your child.
- Using a cool mist humidifier in your childs room.
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Pneumonia Arising In Institutional Settings
- Hospital-Acquired Pneumonia. Hospital-acquired pneumonia is an infection of the lungs contracted during a hospital stay. This type of pneumonia tends to be more serious because patients in the hospital already have weakened defense mechanisms, and the infecting organisms are usually more dangerous than those encountered in the community. Hospital patients are particularly vulnerable to Gram-negative bacteria, which are resistant to many antibiotics, and staphylococci. Hospital-acquired pneumonia is also called nosocomial pneumonia.
- Ventilator-associated pneumonia . A subgroup of hospital-acquired pneumonia is VAP, a very serious infection contracted by patients on ventilators in hospitals and long-term nursing facilities.
- Nursing-home acquired pneumonia. Pneumonia acquired in a nursing home or other long-term care facility is the second most common type of infection in these facilities, and it is usually bacterial. This type of pneumonia is sometimes difficult to diagnose as older populations are less likely to report fever, chills, and chest pain. Chest radiography and physical exam are necessary. Sputum sample and antigen tests may be helpful.
The term “healthcare associated pneumonia” is also utilized for all the above types of pneumonia as a group.
How To Diagnose Pain Below Sternum
There are many possible causes of upper abdominal pain or pain below the sternum. Aside from taking a medical history and conducting a physical exam, healthcare providers may order some diagnostic tests to help confirm the diagnosis. These include blood tests, chest X-ray, magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography scan.
It is always best to seek medical consultation, especially when the symptoms do not get better with over-the-counter medications or other home remedies.
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Aspiration Pneumonia And Anaerobic Bacteria
The mouth contains a mixture of bacteria that is normally harmless. However, if this mixture reaches the lungs, it can cause a serious condition called aspiration pneumonia. This may happen after a head injury or general anesthesia, or when a person takes drugs or alcohol. In such cases, the gag reflex does not work as well as it should, so bacteria can enter the airways. Unlike other organisms that are inhaled, some of the bacteria that cause aspiration pneumonia do not need oxygen to live. These bacteria are called anaerobic bacteria.
When Can I Return To Work School And Regular Activities If I Have Pneumonia
You typically can resume your normal activities if your symptoms are gone, mild or improving and you do not have new or worsening:
- Shortness of breath or tiredness
- Chest pain
- Mucus, fever or cough
If you are generally healthy, most people feel well enough to return to previous activities in about a week. However, it may take about a month to feel totally back to normal.
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Clinical Presentation And Initial Management
Four-year old Stacey Jones,* previously healthy, was referred with a two-day history of fever up to 40C – despite being given regular antipyretics – and severe abdominal pain. Initial observations showed a temperature of 40C, a pulse rate of 152bpm, respiratory rate of 34 breaths per minute, saturations 95% in air and a central capillary refill time of two seconds. She was unsettled during assessment but an examination of her abdomen did not reveal any tenderness. There were mild chest wall recessions and a few crackles on the left side of the chest, and air entry was reported as normal on both sides. The provisional diagnosis was a viral illness and the need to rule out pneumonia was documented. In view of the absence of signs on an abdominal examination and fever, a chest X-ray was ordered and Stacey was admitted.
Defining Pneumonia By Origin Of Infection
Health care providers often classify pneumonia based on where the disease is contracted. This helps predict which organisms are most likely responsible for the illness and, therefore, which treatment is most likely to be effective.
People with this type of pneumonia contracted the infection outside of a hospital setting. It is one of the most common infectious diseases. It often follows a viral respiratory infection, such as the flu.
One of the most common causes of bacterial CAP is Streptococcus pneumoniae. Other causes include Haemophilus influenza , Mycoplasma pneumoniae, and Chlamydia pneumoniae .
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Types Of Walking Pneumonia
Walking pneumonia is one of more than 30 different types of pneumonia. It can be divided into a few different subtypes, including:
This type of pneumonia tends to be mild, and most people recover without treatment. Its caused by the bacterium Mycoplasma pneumoniae . The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that there are about of M. pneumoniae infections each year in the United States.
This type of walking pneumonia is caused by Chlamydia pneumoniae bacteria. While it can cause a serious infection, most people experience only mild illness or no symptoms whatsoever. Its common among school-age children and young adults.
Legionnaires disease is one of the most serious types of walking pneumonia, as it can lead to both respiratory failure and death. Its caused by Legionella, a type of bacteria found in freshwater that can contaminate water systems in buildings. People can get this disease if they inhale airborne droplets of water that contain the bacteria.
Walking pneumonia symptoms are typically mild and look like the common cold. People may start noticing signs of walking pneumonia between 1 and 4 weeks of being exposed to the pathogen that caused the disease.
Symptoms of walking pneumonia can include:
- loss of appetite
What Is The Outlook For Pneumonia
People who are otherwise healthy often recover quickly when given prompt and proper care. However, pneumonia is a serious condition and can be life-threatening if left untreated and especially for those individuals at increased risk for pneumonia.
Even patients who have been successfully treated and have fully recovered may face long-term health issues. Children who have recovered from pneumonia have an increased risk of chronic lung diseases. Adults may experience:
- General decline in quality of life for months or years
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What To Do With Back Pain From Pneumonia
You need to control the back pain. It is not just a matter of comfort. Uncontrolled back pain from pneumonia makes it difficult to recover and also makes you vulnerable to more complications. You can start by taking some Tylenol. Ibuprofen or Naproxen can be taken on top of the Tylenol. The goal is to make your pain tolerable enough to be able to cough and take deep breaths regularly. If over-the-counter pain medications are not enough, you may have to ask your doctor for prescription pain medications to enable you to cough and take deep breaths comfortably. However, it is best to avoid opioids. They can make you drowsy and suppress your cough reflex.
When you have a severe, sharp pain in your back from pneumonia, you may avoid taking deep breaths. If you dont take deep breaths, the lower part of your lungs may collapse. A collapsed lung can worsen your pneumonia and make you more short of breath.
Taking deep breaths and coughing normally are two very important things to help you recover from pneumonia.
What Causes Pneumonia
Pneumonia is an infection of the lungs caused by viruses, bacteria,fungi and parasites. A person who becomes ill with a cold, the flu, bacterialor other infection can develop pneumonia as a secondary illness. Pneumonia ismore common from autumn through spring because there are more cases of cold andflu during this time.
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How Long Does It Last
It takes a certain amount of time to start to feel sick after getting exposed to a germ. This length of time is called the incubation period, and it depends on many things, especially which bug is causing the illness.
With influenza pneumonia, for example, someone may become sick as soon as 12 hours or as long as 3 days after exposure to the flu virus. But with walking pneumonia, a person may not feel it until 2 to 3 weeks after becoming infected.
Most types of pneumonia clear up within a week or two, although a cough can linger for several weeks more. In severe cases, it may take longer to completely recover.
Causes Of Walking Pneumonia
Walking pneumonia can be caused by viruses or bacteria. According to the American Lung Association, most cases are caused by M. pneumoniae, a common type of bacteria that usually affects children and adults under the age of 40. M. pneumoniae infections tend to peak in summer and early fall but can happen throughout the year.
Chlamydophila pneumoniae can also cause walking pneumonia. Infections from this type of bacteria are common in all four seasons. It often spreads in crowded environments, like college dorms and long-term care facilities.
Adults and children can also contract walking pneumonia from viruses. Respiratory syncytial virus is a frequent cause of walking pneumonia in young kids, while adults tend to get the viral form of the disease from the influenza virus.
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How Can I Prevent Pneumonia
Pneumococcal conjugate vaccination for:
Pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccination for:
If you have been experiencing pneumonia symptoms, make an appointmentwith your provider today. Prompt treatment of pneumonia isimportant for recovery. Requestan appointment with a family medicine provider to receive your flu andpneumococcal vaccinations.