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Pneumonia

Overview

Pneumonia - an infection of the lungs. It usually affects children under two years old, adults over 65 and people with weakened immune systems (such as diabetes, AIDS, alcoholics). There are many types of pneumonia, which vary in severity from mild to severe and sometimes fatal.

Causes of pneumonia

Often the cause is bacterial flora, particularly Streptococcus pneumoniae. Bacterial pneumonia can develop after upper respiratory tract infections such as colds or flu. Approximately 50% of cases the causative agent of pneumonia is the virus. Viral pneumonia is more common in winter and is usually not as sharp as the nature of bacterial pneumonia.

In some cases, is caused by mycoplasma - organisms with properties of both viruses and bacteria.

Other pathogens of pneumonia may be fungi and parasites, but it happens much less often.

Symptoms of pneumonia

Symptoms of pneumonia can be similar to the symptoms of colds or flu. Depending on the etiology of pneumonia may have different symptoms.

Symptoms of bacterial pneumonia can occur as acute or gradual.
They include: fever, shivering, severe pain in the chest, profuse sweating, cough with thick, reddish or greenish sputum, rapid pulse and rapid breathing, cyanotic lips and nails.

For viral pneumonia characterized by fever, dry cough, headache, muscle pain, weakness, fatigue and severe shortness of breath.

Symptoms of pneumonia caused by mycoplasma, often similar to the symptoms of bacterial and viral pneumonia, but is usually less pronounced.

Complications of pneumonia

- Inflammation of the pleura (pleurisy);
- Pulmonary edema;
- Lung abscess (in the lung cavity filled with pus);
- Respiratory disorders.

What you can do?

Consult a physician immediately. Before this can take a febrifuge, suitable drugs against cough.

Seek emergency medical attention or call him at home in the following cases:

- Cough, chest pain, fever;
- A sharp deterioration in general condition after a cold or flu;
- Chills, shortness of breath.

If pneumonia is suspected in persons over 65 years, people with chronic illnesses or weakened immune systems, children and pregnant women should immediately call a doctor, who is likely to prompt hospitalization.

What can your doctor?

To confirm the diagnosis of chest radiography performed. Causative agent was determined by a special analysis of blood and sputum. In identifying bacterial or fungal infections, and antibiotic therapy is prescribed antifungal drugs.

In severe cases the patient sent to hospital. In severe respiratory failure carried oxygen therapy.

Prophylaxis

- People over 65 and other risk groups recommended vaccinations against certain types of strep (he is one of the most common pathogens);
- For children at-risk groups (eg, asthma patients), a special vaccine;
- Because pneumonia often occurs as a complication of influenza, annual vaccination against influenza is also a way to prevent;
- How can you wash your hands frequently with soap, for 15-30 seconds to remove germs that can cause pneumonia;
- Maintain the body's resistance with a healthy diet, rest and regular exercise;
- Do not smoke. Smoking reduces the natural resistance of bronchi and lungs to respiratory infections.

Call an ambulance if your eyes on the man began to choke, he turned blue nails and nasolabial triangle, heard a heavy, raspy breathing, difficulty swallowing.