How To Diagnose Chronic Pneumonia
When you realise that the listed symptoms persist, consult your doctor on whether you require to be examined for chronic pneumonia. In most cases, this examination involves a repetition of CAT scans, x-rays and examining the phlegm for fungi or bacteria. In some instances, the doctor might use a camera to look at your throat for any form of infection through a process called bronchoscopy. It is important to mention to your doctor if you are taking any medicines that might compromise your immunity. When identified early, pneumonia is treatable.
When a blood test is conducted on a chronic pneumonia patient, the results will often show elevated levels of white blood cells as well as signs related to chronic inflammation. When the lungs are viewed via an endoscopy procedure or an x-ray they might appear obstructed. When viewed the doctor might observe changes in the insides of the lungs as well as the airways. This means that the chronic infection has caused excessive production of mucus, redness as well as other changes in the respiratory system.
B History Part : Prevalence:
The overall prevalence of recurrent pneumonia is not clear estimates of the percentage of patients who have had one episode of pneumonia and then present with a second episode vary from 7.5% to over 20%.
Young patients without known comorbidities should not develop recurrent pneumonia and repeated episodes of pneumonia should trigger a search for an underlying cause. Younger patients presenting with recurrent bacterial pneumonia are more likely to have immune deficiencies or cystic fibrosis . Older patients with recurrent pneumonia are more likely to have aspiration pneumonia , COPD, or a secondary immune deficiency such as HIV, multiple myeloma or chronic lymphocytic leukemia.
What Stands Out About Yale Medicines Approach To Pneumonia
Pneumonia is a common infection in both children and adults and can often be easily treated. However, if specialized care is required, Yale Medicine physicians practice at both Yale New Haven Hospital and Yale New Haven Childrens Hospital.
Furthermore, our researchers are involved in developing ways to more quickly and accurately diagnose lung infections through the Yale Center for Pulmonary Infection Research and Treatment . We dont tend to think of pneumonia as a chronic condition. But some patients end up with longer-term problems, says Dr. Dela Cruz, director of the CPIRT. The center focuses on finding new potential treatment options and running clinical trials to better understand the disease.
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Recurrent Pneumonia Not Common Lung Expert Says
Pneumonia is one of the most common of lung infections among the elderly but concerns of underlying conditions arise when it recurs, a leading South African pulmonologist said Sunday.
Nelson Mandela was admitted Saturday in a “serious but stable” condition for a recurrent lung infection.
It is his fourth hospital stay since December and his third for lung infection. The Nobel peace prize laureate, who turns 95 next month, was in April hospitalised for 10 days for pneumonia treatment. Officials have not specified if the latest infection afflicting Mandela is pneumonia.
Of the different types of lung infections, “pneumonia is the most serious and the most common in elderly patients,” said professor Guy Richards, director of critical care at Johannesburg’s Charlotte Maxeke Academic Hospital.
But when it recurs, it means there would be other underlying conditions.
“It’s very unusual to get the common pneumonia occurring recurrently unless there’s a specific reason for it.
“And those sorts of things are that if your lung has been damaged previously, for example if you had tuberculosis, then often those damaged areas will be colonized with bacteria which are able to cause recurrent infections,” he told AFP.
Acute pneumonia can damage other organs of the body such as the kidneys or affect blood pressure, he said.
Treatment, under normal circumstances last just days, but in serious cases where hospitalisation is required, it can last several weeks.
Articles On Pneumonia Types
Bacterial pneumonia is an infection of your lungs caused by certain bacteria. The most common one is Streptococcus , but other bacteria can cause it too. If youâre young and basically healthy, these bacteria can live in your throat without causing any trouble. But if your bodyâs defenses become weak for some reason, the bacteria can go down into your lungs. When this happens, the air sacs in your lungs get infected and inflamed. They fill up with fluid, and that causes pneumonia.
You have a higher risk of getting bacteria pneumonia if you:
- Are 65 or older
- Have other conditions like asthma, diabetes, or heart disease
- Are recovering from surgery
- Donât eat right or get enough vitamins and minerals
- Have another condition that weakens your bodyâs defenses
- Drink too much alcohol
- Have viral pneumonia
People who have a weakened immune system also have an increased risk for bacterial pneumonia. These include those who recently had an organ transplant. People who are HIV positive, or who have leukemia, lymphoma, or severe kidney disease also stand a greater chance of developing the infection.
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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 To Avoid Pneumonia And Its Complications
There is no single trick to avoid pneumonia, especially for seniors with existing medical conditions. There are, however, many things you can do to reduce your risk of developing pneumonia, and to limit the damage it does if you do get it.
The first, and arguably most productive, way to keep safe from pneumonia is to be generally healthy. Eating right, exercising daily and managing chronic conditions, such as diabetes, all have the effect of bolstering your immune system and making pneumonia less likely to strike when you get the flu or a cold.
Part of taking care of yourself is getting an annual flu shot. If your doctor believes your immune system is able to cope with the vaccine, you can help limit the spread of the single biggest cause of pneumonia among older adults, as well as reduce the risk that you will develop pneumonia yourself. Wearing a mask, practicing social distancing and avoiding close quarters with people who show the signs of a respiratory illness are also important steps that can prevent infections that lead to pneumonia.
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Pathogenesis: What Makes Elderly Patients Prone To Developing Pneumonia
In general, regardless of age, pneumonia occurs when an organisms ability to penetrate and infect the lung parenchyma overcomes the hosts defense mechanisms. Several factors common in the elderly contribute to breaches in their defense systems, making elderly patients not only more vulnerable to infection, but also more vulnerable to severe infection associated with prolonged recovery and poor outcomes.
Neurologic changes predisposing older adults to silent aspiration include reduced ability to cough owing to gag reflex dysfunction as well as changes in mental status. In one study, oropharyngeal dysphagia was strongly associated with CAP in the elderly . In addition, pneumonia has been estimated to occur in about 10% to 30% of patients after a stroke., In a study that followed patients older than 65 years with infarcts, patients with bilateral basal ganglia infarcts had the highest incidence of pneumonia compared with those with no infarct or less extensive lesions. The response to infection is altered in the elderly owing to lower sensitivity of the respiratory centers to hypoxia and hypercapnia. Altered mentation and absence of cough or appropriate ventilator response also modify clinical presentation in the elderly, delay diagnosis and treatment, and consequently impact clinical outcomes., The increased frequency of respiratory tract colonization in older adults, , leads to an increased likelihood of chemical aspiration developing into aspiration pneumonia.
Recurrence Of Pneumonia In Middle
In order to investigate the predisposing conditions and aetiologic agents in patients with recurrent pneumonia, we prospectively studied 653 immunocompetent patients, 5085 years of age, who had been treated in hospital for community-acquired pneumonia. After an average patient follow-up period of 32 months, 11 variables were examined for association with the following end points: death, recurrence of pneumonia and recurrence of pneumococcal pneumonia. During the follow-up period there were 171 episodes of pneumonia in 115 of the 653 patients, and 52 deaths . Multivariate analysis showed that age, male sex, congestive heart failure and presence of other chronic diseases were significantly associated with higher mortality. Age and chronic pulmonary disease were associated with recurrence of pneumonia. The major aetiologic agents were Streptococcus pneumoniae , Haemophilus influenzae and Moraxella catarrhalis . We conclude that pneumonia recurrences are common in middle-aged and elderly patients after treatment in hospital for community-acquired pneumonia. The recurrence risk is higher in elderly patients, and in those with chronic pulmonary diseases. Given the prominence of H. influenzae and M. catarrhalis found in the present study, these organisms should always be considered when choosing the initial antibiotic in patients with recurrent pneumonia.
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Good Hygiene And Preventing Transmission
The best way to prevent serious respiratory infections such as pneumonia is to avoid sick people and to practice good hygiene.
Colds and flu are spread primarily from infected people who cough or sneeze. People commonly transmit a cold when they shake hands. Washing hands frequently can prevent the spread of viral respiratory illnesses. Always wash your hands before eating and after going outside. Using ordinary soap is sufficient. Alcohol-based gels are also effective for everyday use, and may even kill cold viruses. If extreme hygiene is required, use alcohol-based rinses.
Antibacterial soaps add little protection, particularly against viruses. Wiping surfaces with a solution that contains 1 part bleach to 10 parts water is very effective at killing viruses.
Independent Risk Factors For Development Of Recurrent Pneumonia
In general, patients who had recurrent pneumonia were older, frailer, had more comorbidity, and had more severe pneumonia at presentation than those who did not have a recurrence. Table presents patient characteristics stratified according to the presence or absence of recurrent pneumonia. Although these tabulated data suggest several potential risk factors, in multivariable analyses adjusted for sex, initial pneumonia severity, and medications, only older age and functional status were independently associated with an increased risk of recurrent pneumonia. Specifically, pneumonia recurred in 111 of 916 patients with any impairment in functional status vs 134 of 1793 patients who were fully independent . Although not statistically significant, there was a trend toward inhaled corticosteroids also being independently associated with an increased risk of recurrent pneumonia . In terms of sensitivity analyses, using the same model as our primary analysis, both multivariable logistic regression and competing risks proportional hazards models yielded virtually identical resultsthe only robust and statistically significant variable associated with recurrent pneumonia was impaired functional status .
Rates of recurrent pneumonia according to functional status: cumulative incidence curves.
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How Can Recurrent Pneumonia Be Prevented
All childhood immunizations should be provided, including annual influenza immunizations.
Tobacco poisoning should be avoided.
Genetic counseling may be appropriate for families with CF, PCD, and immunodeficiency states.
Many children with chronic lung problems also have nutritional challenges. Supporting adequate nutrition facilitates cough strength and efficiency. Children with CF with good nutrition have a survival advantage over those who do not.
Importance Of Evaluating Recurrent Respiratory Infections
Respiratory infections are sometimes considered more of a nuisance, but it’s very important to take these seriously and have a thorough exam if there isn’t a clear explanation as to why they are occurring. Sometimes this will only require a careful history and physical examination other times a more intensive workup will be needed. Not only can repeated infections cause complications , but a delay in diagnosis is the norm rather than the exception when a cause such as immunodeficiency or lung cancer is present conditions that are most easily treated when caught early.
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More Severe Cases May Also Cause:
- quick breathing
- rapid heartbeat
- nausea and vomiting
Some people get a sharp pain in their chest when they breathe in and out. This may be because the thin lining between the lung and ribcage, called the pleura, is infected and inflamed. This inflammation, called pleurisy, stops your lungs moving smoothly as you breathe.
The symptoms of pneumonia are often very similar to those of other chest infections, such as bronchitis, COPD flare-ups or bronchiectasis flare-ups. To get a proper diagnosis youll need to visit your GP.
If you feel unwell with these symptoms, see your GP or call 111. If you have chest pain, a rapid heartbeat, quick breathing, shivers or confusion, get urgent advice from your GP or call 999. Take extra care if youre over 65.
How Is Pneumonia Treated
Treatment will depend on whether the pneumonia is caused by bacteria or a virus.
If bacteria have caused the infection, the main treatment is antibiotics. In milder cases, antibiotics can be taken by mouth. In more severe cases, theyll need to injected, at least at first. Antibiotics are usually given at the first sign of pneumonia, before its clear whether the pneumonia is caused by a virus or bacteria.
Viral pneumonia cannot be treated with antibiotics.
Most people who have pneumonia will be able to stay home. If your symptoms havent improved within the first 5 days of taking antibiotics or your symptoms get worse, contact the doctor. Sometimes you may need a change in the dose or type of antibiotic, or you may need more than one medicine.
Some people will need to be treated in hospital. This is more common for people who are very old, very young or who have other illnesses. A person in hospital for pneumonia may need oxygen therapy, or other more intense forms of treatment.
Cough medicine is not recommended for people with pneumonia. Coughing can help move mucous plugs from the tubes and help clear the infection.
People with pneumonia should quit smoking and keep well away from things that will irritate their lungs, such as smoke. Drink plenty of fluids and get lots of rest to help you recover.
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Whats The Treatment Like For Pneumonia In Older Adults
Some cases of pneumonia in older adults can be treated at home. However, depending on your symptoms and overall health, its also possible that you may be hospitalized.
Antibiotics are used to treat pneumonia thats caused by bacteria. The types of antibiotics used can depend on the type of bacteria causing the infection and on the infections severity. They may be given orally or .
Some examples of antibiotics used for pneumonia can include one or a combination of the following:
Viruses cant be treated with antibiotics.
Treatment of viral pneumonia focuses on supportive care, such as easing symptoms, maintaining hydration, and monitoring vital signs. In some cases, antiviral drugs may be used.
In the case of the flu, an antiviral, such as Tamiflu, may be prescribed.
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 patients 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
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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