Pneumonia - Causes, Prevention and Treatment
What Is Pneumonia?
Pneumonia is an infection of the lungs that can be caused by a virus or bacteria. It is a condition in which there is fluid in the lungs. Pneumonia may lead to breathing problems and low blood oxygen levels if it gets worse.
To diagnose pneumonia, a doctor will take a chest x-ray and listen to your chest with a stethoscope.
The doctor may also order CT scans or lab tests of your blood, urine, or sputum sample. In some cases, pneumonia can cause serious complications such as aspiration pneumonia which happens when food enters through the windpipe into the lungs where it leads to infections that affect other organs like the brain and stomach.
Pneumonia is a common infection and it is most often caused by a virus. However, it can be caused by bacteria like Legionella, Mycoplasma, and Pseudomonas. Usually, pneumonia does not cause any specific symptoms but in some cases, it causes fever, cough, shortness of breath, or chest pain.
A vaccine called pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV13) protects you from the types of bacteria that can cause pneumonia.
Every year in the United States about 750,000 people get sick with pneumonia and about 200,000 people get hospitalized because of this illness. About 1 in 20 people who get pneumonia will need to be hospitalized.
Most people with pneumonia do not need treatment in the hospital, but people with children or elderly patients fall into this category of high-risk patients. It is important to take steps to prevent infections like pneumonia because it can be serious and even deadly if left untreated.
Pneumonia is most common in the winter months when cold viruses are flying around, but it can also happen at other times of the year.
Pneumonia is contagious, so it can easily spread from person to person. You can protect yourself from getting it by washing your hands frequently and covering your mouth and nose with a tissue when you sneeze or cough.
How Is Pneumonia Treated?
Pneumonia is treated by taking antibiotics that will treat the infection. This will cure the infection and prevent it from spreading into other organs like the brain and stomach which can cause severe complications and even death. Some patients may require hospitalization if they are too sick. Others may recover at home with rest and plenty of fluids.
Treating pneumonia in the hospital is important because it prevents further complications from occurring. You may be given oxygen to help you breathe if you are having trouble breathing. You may also need to stay in the intensive care unit (ICU) for a while if your condition becomes very serious.
Some patients recover without any complications. However, when pneumonia is not treated properly, it can cause severe damage to the lungs and other organs like the brain and stomach. This can cause permanent disabilities or even death if it is not treated immediately.
How You Can Prevent Pneumonia?
Colds are common in young children, older adults, and other people with a chronic conditions. If there is a child or elderly person in your house that has a cold, it is important to wash your hands frequently so you don't spread it to others.
You also need to cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze. Most of the time people recover from pneumonia without too much difficulty unless they have severe complications because they were not diagnosed right away. The best way to avoid getting pneumonia is by getting vaccinated.
Frequently Asked Questions on Pneumonia
What Is The Difference Between Pneumonia And Bronchitis?
Bronchitis is an inflammation of the lining of your lungs (bronchus) while pneumonia is an infection of the lungs.
Bronchitis can be caused by viruses, bacteria, or other pathogens. If you have bronchitis, it will cause fever, coughing, and shortness of breath.
Usually, you do not need to go to the hospital but there are some cases when it can become serious or even deadly. Bronchitis should be treated before pneumonia because it will get worse if untreated.
What Is The Difference Between Pneumonia And Tuberculosis?
Tuberculosis is a bacterial infection in which the bacteria enters your lungs. Tuberculosis can be treated with antibiotics in some cases, but it can sometimes lead to hearing loss, kidney failure, or death.
Pneumonia is caused by viruses or bacteria. It causes fever, shortness of breath, cough, or chest pains. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms you should see a doctor right away because it will get worse if not treated properly.
A vaccine is available to protect against getting pneumonia. The vaccine is especially important for people who are at high risk for getting pneumonia because they are more likely to experience serious complications if they become infected with it.