What Is Bacterial Pneumonia
Bacteria are the most common cause of pneumonia in adults.
Types of bacteria that cause pneumonia include:
- Streptococcus pneumoniae
- Chlamydophila pneumoniae
- Haemophilus influenzae type B
Streptococcus pneumoniae, also known as pneumococcus, is the most common cause of bacterial pneumonia in adults, called pneumococcal pneumonia.
It may be prevented by a vaccine. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends two pneumonia vaccines for adults 65 years and older: pneumococcal conjugate vaccine, or Prevnar 13 , and pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine, or Pneumovax 23 .
According to the CDC:
- You should receive a dose of the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine first, followed at least one year later by a dose of the pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine .
- If you’ve already received any doses of PPSV23, the dose of PCV13 should be given at least one year after the most recent PPSV23 dose.
- If you’ve already received a dose of the PCV13 at a younger age, another dose is not recommended.
Mycoplasma pneumoniae usually infects younger adults who work in crowded areas, such as schools, homeless shelters, or prisons.
Chlamydophila pneumoniae causes a mild pneumonia infection that usually affects people older than 60.
Other bacterial pneumonia symptoms include:
- High fever
- Sore throat
In General What Is Bronchitis And What Is Pneumonia
The American Lung Association says bronchitisspecifically acute bronchitisis the sudden development of inflammation in the bronchial tubes, or the lungs’ major airways. The infection gets beyond the confines of the bronchial tubes and actually gets into the substance of the lung, Dr. Schaffner says. Then it causes inflammation in the tissues of the lung.
Most cases of bronchitis are caused by viruses, often the same viruses that are responsible for common colds and the flu. The same virus that causes the common cold settles lower down and causes bronchitis in some people, Ephraim L. Tsalik, MD, PhD, associate professor of medicine in the division of infectious diseases at Duke Health in Durham, North Carolina, tells Health. But bronchitis is often not severe, is temporary, and usually doesn’t cause any permanent lung damage.
Pneumonia, on the other hand, is an infection in one or both of the lungs, affecting the air sacs of the lungs, causing them to fill up with fluid or pus. according to the US National Library of Medicine’s MedlinePlus resource.
Bacteria is the most common cause of pneumonia, per MedlinePlus, and it can occur on its own, or it can be the result of a viral infection, like the cold or the flu. Viruses, too, can cause pneumonialike respiratory syncytial virus or SARS-CoV-2 though those cases are often less severe. Fugal infections can lead to pneumonia too, but commonly only occur in those with chronic health issues or weakened immune systems.
Protect Yourself And Others
People can get strep throat more than once. Having strep throat does not protect someone from getting it again in the future. While there is no vaccine to prevent strep throat, there are things people can do to protect themselves and others.
Good Hygiene Helps Prevent Group A Strep Infections
The best way to keep from getting or spreading group A strep is to wash your hands often. This is especially important after coughing or sneezing and before preparing foods or eating. To practice good hygiene, you should:
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze
- Put your used tissue in the waste basket
- Cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve or elbow, not your hands, if you dont have a tissue
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
- Use an alcohol-based hand rub if soap and water are not available
You should also wash glasses, utensils, and plates after someone who is sick uses them. These items are safe for others to use once washed.
Wash your hands often to help prevent germs from spreading.
Antibiotics Help Prevent Spreading the Infection to Others
People with strep throat should stay home from work, school, or daycare until they:
- No longer have a fever
- Have taken antibiotics for at least 12 hours
Take the prescription exactly as the doctor says to. Dont stop taking the medicine, even if you or your child feel better, unless the doctor says to stop.
You May Like: Should Pneumonia Vaccine Be Repeated
How To Prevent Scarlet Fever
There is no vaccine for scarlet fever, but people can protect themselves by practicing good hygiene. This includes using a tissue to cover your mouth when sneezing or coughing, frequent hand washing, using alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable, and coughing or sneezing into your upper sleeve or elbow rather than your hands if a tissue isnt available.
Additionally, Sabella says that probably the best way to avoid scarlet fever is if you treat strep throat quickly and adequately. A lot of times you can prevent scarlet fever this way.
If your child develops any of the symptoms of scarlet fever especially if they have been around someone else who is sick get them to a pediatrician right away for treatment.
Interactions With Epithelial Cells Of The Nasopharynx
For over a century, S. pneumoniae has been categorized by serology with distinct serotypes identified on the basis of the greater than 90 immunologically and chemically distinct polysaccharide capsules that surround and protect the bacteria from phagocytosis .The capsular polysaccharide is also the basis of the current pneumococcal vaccines. Prior to the introduction of the 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine in 2010, studies found that only a small subset of the many capsular types was responsible for the majority of IPD isolates . The vast majority of pneumococci colonize the nasopharynx for up to 6 weeks and are then cleared with no systemic symptoms in the host . IPD is thought to occur most frequently early after the acquisition of a new capsular serotype as evidenced by shift in the strains most commonly isolated from IPD patients after vaccine introduction . Furthermore, attack rates are higher for serotypes that are carried for shorter periods of time versus those that colonize for extended periods .
Recommended Reading: At What Age Should You Get Pneumonia Vaccine
Accessing The Lower Respiratory Tract
Development of pneumonia is contingent on the ability of S. pneumoniae to establish a lower respiratory tract infection despite host defenses that either kill or clear the aspirated bacteria. The first barrier is the mucociliary escalator which mechanically works to keep aspirated particles and microorganisms out of the lungs. As is true for many respiratory viruses, neuraminidase plays an important role in initiating bacterial pneumonia. As indicated, neuraminidase deficient pneumococci do not cleave mucin efficiently and have a diminished capacity to adhere. Mutants deficient in nanA have a reduced capacity to bind to chinchilla tracheas ex vivo and are attenuated in their ability to cause a lower respiratory tract infection following intranasal challenge .
Pneumonia Symptoms And Causes
There are more than 30 different causes of pneumonia, including bacteria, viruses, airborne irritants, and fungi. When these germs enter the lungs, they can overpower the immune system and invade nearby lung tissues, which are very delicate.
Once infected, the air sacs in the lungs become inflamed and fill up with fluid and pus, which causes coughing, fever, chills, and breathing problems.
Recommended Reading: What To Do For Viral Pneumonia
How Is Walking Pneumonia Treated
Walking pneumonia is usually mild, does not require hospitalization and is treated with antibiotics . Several types of antibiotics are effective. Antibiotics that are used to treat walking pneumonia caused by Mycoplasma pneumoniae include:
- Macrolide antibiotics: Macrolide drugs are the preferred treatment for children and adults. Macrolides include azithromycin and clarithromycin . Over the past decade, some strains of Mycoplasma pneumoniae have become resistant to macrolide antibiotics, possibly due to the widespread use of azithromycin to treat various illnesses.
- Fluoroquinolones: These drugs include ciprofloxacin and levofloxacin . Fluoroquinolones are not recommended for young children.
- Tetracyclines: This group includes doxycycline and tetracycline. They are suitable for adults and older children.
Often, over-the-counter medications can also be taken to help relieve symptoms of nasal congestion, cough and loosen mucus buildup in the chest. If you have a fever:
- Drink more fluids
What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Pneumonia And Why Is It So Serious
The most common signs and symptoms of pneumonia include a cough , fatigue, fever, shortness of breath, chest pain when you cough, nausea, vomiting, and lack of appetite, explains Dr. Dass. You might also experience profuse sweating and rapid heart rate, adds Dr. Patel. “In more severe cases, patients can become confused and skin can appear bluish or pale due to poor oxygen status,” she explains.
Some people simply aren’t aware that they’re dealing with pneumonia, which is why the infection can become very serious very quickly, says Dr. Dass. “If your symptoms are mild, you may think you have a common cold or flu. With pneumonia, symptoms will last longer than you would typically expect a cold to last. The only way to definitively make the diagnosis is with a chest x-ray,” she explains.
Even if your symptoms seem mild, pneumonia is still extremely serious, notes Dr. Patel. ” requires medical attention,” she explains. “Antibiotics are sometimes prescribed, and in severe cases, hospitalization is required. It is very serious, as it impairs oxygenation throughout the body. If left untreated or not treated appropriately, it can lead to worsening systemic infection and possible death.”
You May Like: Can Strep Throat Turn Into Pneumonia
Dr Oz: Strep Throat & Antibiotics
Dr Oz did a show about Strep Throat caused by the Streptococcus bacteria. If you have ever had Strep Throat, you surely remember the unbearable pain every time you drink or swallow. A sore throat can be the sign of a cold, but it could also be the sign of Strep Throat which can be more dangerous than you think if it goes untreated. If you are wondering about the difference between a Sore Throat and a Strep Throat, then read this recap from another segment of Dr Oz: Sore Throat vs Strep Throat. Doctor Ozs Assistant-Of-The-Day was Joy from seat 28, and she said that just a couple of weeks ago she had a sore throat. Dr Oz is from Philadelphia originally, so he seemed particularly excited that Joy was from his hometown!
What Diseases Can Streptococcus Pneumoniae Cause
As previously mentioned, one of the most common diseases that is caused by the bacteria Streptococcus Pneumonia is pneumonia, a condition where a patient’s lungs and the alveoli therein become inflamed due to infection. Pneumonia caused by this bacteria is broken up into four stages. During the first, the alveoli of the host’s lung fill up with a serous fluid which scientists believe is stimulated by the Streptococcus Pneumoniae cell wall. The organisms contained within this fluid are then spread throughout the lungs, which leads to the second stage, in which neutrophils invade the alveoli. More red blood cells are also attracted to the site. During the third stage of pneumonia, macrophages eat away the remaining residue from the rush of blood to the area. If Streptococcus Pneumoniae is not found and stopped, it can persist in the lungs and then get into the blood stream, where it is easier for the bacteria to get into the brain and start infecting the meninges, causing meningitis.
Besides meningitis and pneumonia, there are a number of other diseases that are associated with Streptococcus Pneumonia, including sinusitis where the paranasal sinuses become infected, and otitis, the infected of the middle ear. Streptococcus Pneumoniae can also cause petonitis, the inflammation of the peritoneum, and arthritis.
Recommended Reading: What Do They Do For Pneumonia
Why Do I Have Bronchitis
The bronchi are the main airways in your lungs, which branch off on either side of your windpipe . They lead to smaller and smaller airways inside your lungs, known as bronchioles.
The walls of the bronchi produce mucus to trap dust and other particles that could otherwise cause irritation.
Most cases of acute bronchitis develop when an infection causes the bronchi to become irritated and inflamed, which causes them to produce more mucus than usual. Your body tries to shift this extra mucus through coughing.
Smoking is the most common cause of chronic bronchitis. Over time, tobacco smoke can cause permanent damage to the bronchi, causing them to become inflamed.
Read more about the causes of bronchitis.
What Is Pediatric Pneumonia
Pneumonia is an inflammation in one or both of the lungs that is almost always caused by a viral or bacterial infection. The inflammation interferes with the bodyâs ability to deliver oxygen and remove carbon dioxide from the blood. A person is more likely to get pneumonia as a child, known as pediatric pneumonia, than they are as an adult.
Symptoms of pediatric pneumonia depend on the cause of the infection and several other factors, including the age and general health of the child. Rapid breathing, a high temperature and coughing are three of the most common signs of the condition.
Pneumonia in newborns and very young children is more likely to be caused by a viral, rather than a bacterial infection. Potential viral causes for pneumonia include respiratory syncytial virus or influenza infection. Bacterial infections become more common in school-aged children and young adolescents. The most common bacterial cause for pneumonia is a type of bacterium known as streptococcus pneumoniae, but there are several other bacterial infections that can also cause pneumonia.
Diagnosis is generally based on a physical exam and several other tests, which may include blood tests and an X-ray.
Vaccination against bacterial infection is the best way of preventing the spread of pediatric pneumonia. Children aged over six months old may also benefit from the influenza vaccine.
You May Like: What Causes Pneumonia In Adults
Could I Have A Sinus Infection And Strep Throat
Did you know that It is possible to have a sinus infection and strep throat at the same time? When your bodys immune system is low, you are more susceptible to illnesses and have a harder time fighting them off. So, what starts as a mild cold can end up a severe sinus infection and strep throat.
A sinus infection occurs when your sinuses become swollen and inflamed. It is common to develop a sinus infection after a cold because a cold can cause sinuses to swell, preventing the discharge of mucus. According to WebMD, When the sinuses become blocked and filled with fluid, bacteria can grow there and cause infection. This infection is sinusitis.
Stomachache, fatigue, and vomiting
A physician can usually determine if you have strep throat in a matter of minutes with a rapid strep test. Once it is confirmed that you have strep throat, he or she will normally prescribe antibiotics. If you have a sinus infection and strep throat, the antibiotics that are prescribed for one illness will usually take care of the other illness as well.
Whether you have strep throat, a sinus infection, a cold, or the flu, FastMed Urgent Care is available to see you every day of the year. With locations throughout North Carolina and Arizona, finding the care you need is simple. Contact your local FastMed today.
Recommended Reading: Why Does Pneumonia Cause Diarrhea
An Overview Of Peritonsillar Abscess
Peritonsillar abscess , or quinsy, is a bacterial infection that causes pus to collect next to the tonsils and the pharynx towards the back of the throat. It usually occurs only next to one of your tonsils and usually progresses from cellulitis to an abscess. In general, peritonsillar abscesses take about 2 to 8 days to form and are normally caused by Staphylococcus aureus , Haemophilus influenzae and Group A hemolytic streptococci bacteria.
The peritonsillar abscess is typically sandwiched between the palatine tonsil and the superior constrictor muscle in the back of the throat. There are three “compartments” that the abscess, or pus, typically locates in. The topmost area, called superior, is where the majority of cases of peritonsillar abscess occur. The rest occur in either the middle or lower section between the tonsil and the muscle.
Read Also: Where Can I Get The Pneumonia Shot
When To Call A Professional
If you have a persistent fever, difficulty breathing or a cough that produces colored phlegm or blood, contact your doctor. If hoarseness lasts for several weeks after a respiratory infection, or if hoarseness develops without any respiratory infection, check with your doctor to determine whether some other condition of the vocal cords, such as a tumor, may be causing the hoarseness.
Can Strep Throat Lead To Pneumonia
Ask U.S. doctors your own question and get educational, text answers â it’s anonymous and free!
Ask U.S. doctors your own question and get educational, text answers â it’s anonymous and free!
HealthTap doctors are based in the U.S., board certified, and available by text or video.
Don’t Miss: Where Do You Give Pneumonia Vaccine
Preventing The Spread Of Pneumonia
You can help prevent the spread of a pneumonia by taking some simple hygiene precautions.
- washing your hands regularly and thoroughly, particularly after touching your nose and mouth, and before handling food
- coughing and sneezing into a tissue, then throwing it away immediately and washing your hands
- not sharing cups or kitchen utensils with others
Scarlet Fever Spreads In Droplets Through The Air
Scarlet fever, like strep throat, is highly contagious and is more common in children than adults, particularly those between the ages of 5 and 15.
Its spread from person to person when someone who is infected coughs or sneezes, through small droplets in the air. You can get sick by breathing in those droplets or by touching something that the droplets have landed on and then touching your nose or mouth. Drinking from the same glass or eating off the same plate as someone who has scarlet fever can also spread the illness.
Its also possible to get scarlet fever sores on the skin caused by a strep infection.
Close contact with someone who has the infection is the biggest risk factor for getting the illness.
Certainly among family members and in schools its usually very contagious because of close contact among children, Dr. Sabella says. There are lots of outbreaks usually in the winter and springtime.
Recommended Reading: What Medicine Helps With Pneumonia