What are the Symptoms of Pneumonia

Pneumonia is a chronic disease wherein inflammations of the lungs are caused due to viruses, microorganisms, bacteria and chemical or physical irritants. Even a small droplet of pneumonia causing organisms can enter a human body through the nose, mouth or lungs and cause a pneumonia attack. The detailed knowledge of Pneumonia symptoms can help every sufferer to easily identify the disease, intervene and successfully get it treated in time.

Some of the common symptoms of Pneumonia are:

  • Increase in the pulse rate with shallow breathing. 
  • A hacking cough is accompanied with greenish or yellowish mucus. Many times this mucus is accompanied with pus or blood
  • A patient may also suffer breathlessness or exhaustion especially at the time of overexertion like climbing stairs or running
  • A considerable loss of appetite, low energy, sweating and fatigue
  • A person may also experience mild to severe headache with cough, chest pain, vomiting and fever
  • Chest pain is often sharp and worsens further with cough or deep breathing. This is also called as a pleuritic pain
  • In rare and extreme cases, a patient might also observe the blueness in the skin with joint and muscle pains too
  • Infants may experience a decreased appetite, high fever accompanied with a discoloration or blueness in their skin, lips or nails
  • A severe pain can occur around the breast bone or chest area.

All the above symptoms of Pneumonia can lead to mild to fatal medical conditions depending upon the kinds of organisms, age and health conditions of a person.

Patients at a greater risk of getting inflicted with a pneumonia attack are:

  • People addicted to smoking or consuming excessive alcohol
  • Toddlers and babies especially those who are prematurely born
  • People who have recently suffered from a viral infection
  • People having chronic lung infections or strokes

Diagnosis:

Pneumonia can be easily diagnosed with a stethoscope wherein a doctor will hear crackling or abnormal breathing sounds. A few blood test and sputum sample testing in a laboratory can also confirm a lung infection. The doctor might also prescribe a chest x-ray test that can reveal the percentage of infected lungs to confirm the present stage of pneumonia. 

Treatment:

Pneumonia can be easily treated in comfort of your home. Generally pneumonia treatment includes syrup or mouth tablet antibiotics, pain relieving medicines and Paracetamol for fever. However, a severe pneumonia attack may require an immediate admission and treatment in the hospital.

A hospital treatment may include:

  • Antibiotics and fluids intravenously dripped into the veins
  • Oxygen therapy to allow a normal flow of oxygen especially in case of extreme conditions of breathlessness
  • Physiotherapy to help clearing the sputum blocking the lungs
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