Pneumonia Symptoms: Worrying Sign On Lungs After Covid Infection You Should Be Aware Of
As Omicron continues to spread, the risk of people developing long-term health complications keep rising. Here are the symptoms of pneumonia, one common condition caused by Covid
The onset of pneumonia can be quite sudden, emerging within a 48-hour period. The NHS has warned that the lung condition can lead to symptoms such as a phlegm-producing cough.
You can also expect to see thick yellow, green, brown mucus when you cough, sometimes it could be blood-stained as well.
Heres everything you need to know about pneumonia symptoms and the best way to prevent it from developing.
How Is Pneumonia Spread From Person To Person
Pneumonia is spread when droplets of fluid containing the pneumonia bacteria or virus are launched in the air when someone coughs or sneezes and then inhaled by others. You can also get pneumonia from touching an object previously touched by the person with pneumonia or touching a tissue used by the infected person and then touching your mouth or nose.
Can Coronavirus Patients Lessen The Chance Of Lung Damage
There are things patients can do to increase their chances for less severe lung damage, Galiatsatos says.
If you have a health issue that puts you at higher risk, make sure youre doing everything you can to minimize the chance of contracting the virus. Also, make sure that your chronic health conditions are managed as well as they can be. For example, people living with diabetes, COPD or heart disease should be especially careful to manage those conditions with monitoring and taking their medications as directed.
Galiatsatos adds that proper nutrition and hydration can also help patients avoid complications of COVID-19. Staying well fed is important for overall health. Proper hydration maintains proper blood volume and healthy mucous membranes in the respiratory system, which can help them better resist infection and tissue damage.
Coronavirus: Smoking, Vaping, Wildfire Smoke and Air Pollution
Our expert, Panagis Galiatsatos, M.D., M.H.S. discusses how smoking, vaping and air pollution might increase the severity of COVID-19. Learn about how each of these could affect a COVID-19 diagnosis.
Recommended Reading: Can You Get Pneumonia From Someone Else
Statistical Analyses And Reporting
Data coding and entry is based at Darwin and conducted in accordance with good clinical practice. Data will be reported and presented in accordance with the updated Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials criteria. Children will be analysed according to the intention-to-treat principle where analysis will be by allocation status regardless of subsequent management. A detailed statistical analysis plan that is approved by the iDMC will be in place prior to data analyses.
For our primary aim, the main effects of the intervention will be determined by comparing the proportion without any chronic respiratory symptoms/signs or evidence of bronchiectasis at 24months. We will report relative risk calculated via log-binomial regression models. Generalised linear models will be used to calculate absolute differences between proportions , as in previous analyses.
Acute Care For Elderly Pneumonia Complications
Children, adults, and seniors all experience pneumonia symptoms differently. In many cases, an older adult will experience more subtle symptoms like the worsening of existing health conditions, confusion, dizziness, and sudden changes in mental awareness. At the first sign of complications, you should contact your medical provider. Sudden, lingering chest pain and new respiratory difficulties are particularly worrisome symptoms, especially with a coronavirus diagnosis. In some situations, COVID-19 may lead to pneumonia, which can become severe in older adults.
If youre experiencing emergency symptoms of COVID-19 or pneumoniasuch as trouble breathing, persistent pain/pressure in the chest, and new confusionseek medical care immediately. In these acute care situations, DispatchHealth can help older adults at risk of developing serious pneumonia complications by providing prompt medical treatment in the comfort of their homes. We provide at-home testing, treatment, and patient support for a wide range of illnesses, including:
Don’t Miss: What Should You Do When You Have Pneumonia
Occupational And Regional Pneumonias
Exposure to chemicals can also cause inflammation and pneumonia. Where you work and live can put you at higher risk for exposure to pneumonia-causing organisms.
- Workers exposed to cattle, pigs, sheep, and horses are at risk for pneumonia caused by anthrax, brucella, and Coxiella burnetii .
Inhalation or respiratory anthrax is a life-threatening infectious disease caused by inhaling the spores of the bacterium Bacillus anthracis. Although the spores are dormant when breathed in, they germinate when exposed to a warm, moist environment, such as the lungs. Not all particles are small enough to pass into the alveoli, or air sacs, but those that do begin to multiply and may spread to the lymphatic system. When the spores germinate, several toxins are released. Particles illustrated are not to scale.
- Agricultural and construction workers in the Southwest are at risk for coccidioidomycosis . The disease is caused by the spores of the fungi Coccidioides immitis and Coccidiodes posadasii.
- Those working in Ohio and the Mississippi Valley are at risk for histoplasmosis, a lung disease caused by the fungus Histoplasma capsulatum. This fungus grows well in areas enriched with bird or bat droppings.
Pleural Effusion Empyema And Abscess
In pneumonia, a collection of fluid may form in the space that surrounds the lung. Occasionally, microorganisms will infect this fluid, causing an empyema. To distinguish an empyema from the more common simple parapneumonic effusion, the fluid may be collected with a needle , and examined. If this shows evidence of empyema, complete drainage of the fluid is necessary, often requiring a drainage catheter. In severe cases of empyema, surgery may be needed. If the infected fluid is not drained, the infection may persist, because antibiotics do not penetrate well into the pleural cavity. If the fluid is sterile, it must be drained only if it is causing symptoms or remains unresolved.
In rare circumstances, bacteria in the lung will form a pocket of infected fluid called a lung abscess. Lung abscesses can usually be seen with a chest X-ray but frequently require a chest CT scan to confirm the diagnosis. Abscesses typically occur in aspiration pneumonia, and often contain several types of bacteria. Long-term antibiotics are usually adequate to treat a lung abscess, but sometimes the abscess must be drained by a surgeon or radiologist.
Read Also: How Do You Get Pneumonia After Surgery
Bacteremia And Septic Shock
If bacteria caused your pneumonia, they could get into your blood, especially if you didn’t see a doctor for treatment. It’s a problem called bacteremia.
When your blood pressure is too low, your heart may not be able to pump enough blood to your organs, and they can stop working. Get medical help right away if you notice symptoms like:
Your doctor will likely treat your lung abscesses with antibiotics. They may do a procedure that uses a needle to remove the pus.
Side Effects Of Antibiotics
Most antibiotics have the following side effects :
- Allergic reactions . These reactions can range from mild skin rashes to rare but severe — even life threatening — anaphylactic shock.
- Infection with Clostridium difficile, the bacteria responsible for causing severe diarrhea, inflammation of the colon , and abdominal pain. This condition can be fatal.
- Interactions with certain drugs, including some over-the-counter medications and supplements. People should inform their doctors of all medications and OTC preparations they are taking, as well as any drug allergies they might have.
- Stomach problems .
- Vaginal infections. Taking Lactobacillus acidophilus supplements or eating yogurt with active acidophilus cultures may help restore healthy bacteria that reduce the risk for such infections. There is no strong evidence that this helps prevent yeast infections.
Recommended Reading: How Do You Know If Your Cough Is Pneumonia
Risk Factors For Hospital
Pneumonia that is contracted in the hospital is called hospital-acquired, or nosocomial, pneumonia. It is the most common hospital-acquired infection in the intensive care unit . It affects an estimated 5 to 10 of every 1,000 hospitalized patients every year. More than half of these cases may be due to strains of bacteria that have developed resistance to antibiotics. In fact, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and multidrug-resistant P aeruginosa are leading causes of death from hospital-acquired pneumonia. Those at highest risk are:
- Older people and the very young.
- People with long-term or severe medical conditions, such as lung problems, heart disease, nervous system disorders, and cancer.
- People who have had surgery, particularly people over age 80 years. Among the surgical procedures that pose a particular risk are removal of the spleen , abdominal aortic aneurysm repair, or operations that impair coughing.
- People who have been in the ICU. This is particularly true for newborns or patients on breathing machines . People who lie flat on their backs are at particular risk for aspiration pneumonia. Raising the person up may reduce this risk.
- People who have received sedation. Hospital patients who receive sedatives also have a higher risk of developing nosocomial pneumonia.
- People who received antibiotics within the previous 90 days.
What Causes Pneumonia In Elderly Adults
Pneumonia is caused by bacteria, viruses, fungi, and other organisms. In the U.S., pneumonia in the elderly is usually caused by bacteria or a virus.
Pneumococcal pneumonia is the most common type of bacterial pneumonia, affecting more than 900,000 Americans each year, according to the ALA. This type of pneumonia is caused by a germ called Streptococcus pneumoniae. It can occur on its own or after someone has a cold or the flu.
These groups are at increased risk for bacterial pneumonia:
- Adults 65 and older
- People with a weakened immune system
- Patients recovering from surgery
- People with other respiratory conditions or viral infections
Viruses can also cause pneumonia. The influenza virus is the most common cause of viral pneumonia in adults. Pneumonia caused by the influenza virus can be severe and even deadly, especially in people with other health conditions such as heart or lung disease.
Coronavirus disease 2019 can also cause a severe type of double pneumonia that may lead to long-lasting lung damage. It may take several months to recover. Pneumonia associated with COVID-19 can sometimes be fatal, especially in high-risk populations like elderly adults.
Don’t Miss: Best Position For Pneumonia Patient
Study Setting And Design
We are conducting a multicentre, parallel group, double-blind placebo RCT involving the paediatric departments of seven participating hospitals in six cities from three different countries: Royal Darwin Hospital in Darwin, Northern Territory Starship Childrens Hospital and KidzFirst Hospital in Auckland and four Malaysian cities . Our study design, summarised in , is in accordance with Standard Protocol Items: Recommendations for Interventional Trials guidelines. Our study is ongoing we recruited our first participant on 30 May, 2016, and expect to continue recruiting until late 2019 with the study anticipated to be completed by late 2021.
The inclusion criteria are:
Hospitalised children aged 3months to < 6years.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in Darwin, Mori or Pacifica children in Auckland, and any child without ethnic restriction in Malaysia.
Features of severe pneumonia on admission with chest wall recession and/or peripheral oxygen saturation < 92% in air) and consolidation on CXR as evaluated by the treating clinician.
Becoming afebrile within 1 to 3 days of commencing intravenous antibiotics, with improved respiratory symptoms and signs, SpO2 > 92% in air and are ready to be switched to oral amoxicillin-clavulanate.
Had symptoms for 7days at the time of admission to hospital.
Things You Should Know About Pneumonia
Pneumonia is an infection that causes the air sacs in the lungs to fill up with fluid or pus, which makes it harder to breathe. The most common symptoms are cough that may be dry or produce phlegm, fever, chills and fatigue. Other symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and pain in the chest. and shortness of breath. Signs that indicate a more severe infection are shortness of breath, confusion, decreased urination and lightheadedness. In the U.S., pneumonia accounts for 1.3 visits to the Emergency Department, and 50,000 deaths annually.
With the COVID-19 pandemic continuing to affect people around the world, pneumonia has become an even larger health concern. Some people infected with the COVID-19 have no symptoms, while others may experience fever, body ache, dry cough, fatigue, chills, headache, sore throat, loss of appetite, and loss of smell.
The more severe symptoms of COV-19, such as high fever, severe cough, and shortness of breath, usually mean significant lung involvement. The lungs can be damaged by overwhelming COVID-19 viral infection, severe inflammation, and/or a secondary bacterial pneumonia. COVID-19 can lead to long lasting lung damage.
Here are other important facts you should know about pneumonia:,
Read Also: How Do You Get Double Pneumonia
Early Lung Growth And Development
Respiratory infections with consequent inflammatory responses may interrupt the critical alveolarisation phase of lung development, restricting alveolar numbers and/or size and leading to often mild, but impaired lung growth. The association between pneumonia and obstructive lung disease is possibly through similar mechanisms to those leading to bronchiectasis, which is an obstructive lung disease. Lung infections at the peak periods of somatic lung growth may also alter the programming of lung development at a local or systemic level. The effects of early infection, especially viral lower respiratory tract infections, upon lung growth, programming and future lung function disease types are beyond the scope of this review and readers are referred to the respiratory literature .
Northwestern Scientists Studying Pneumonia For Years Poised For Covid Lung Research
The study performed at Northwestern Medicine is unique because Wunderink and colleagues have been studying pneumonia for years before the pandemic. As a result, when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, they were prepared to collect fluid from the lungs of these patients in a safe and systematic manner and compare it with fluid collected from other ICU patients with pneumonia collected before the pandemic. This research infrastructure allowed them to show that pneumonia in patients with COVID-19 is different from other pneumonia, and more importantly, how it is different.
Scientists took cells from patients lung fluid and looked at the RNA and the proteins those cells express, enabling them to identify how these immune cells drive inflammation.
This level of resolution could never be achieved without directly sampling lung fluid, said study co-senior author Dr. Alexander Misharin, an assistant professor of pulmonary and critical care medicine at Feinberg and a Northwestern Medicine physician.
The complex nature of the study, in which samples from patients were analyzed with the most sophisticated technologies available in Northwesterns state-of-the art research labs, required the concerted effort of more than 100 researchers.
The work was done as part of a consortium of investigators participating in the Successful Clinical Response in Pneumonia Therapy Systems Biology Center funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases led by Wunderink.
What Is The Prognosis For Double Pneumonia
Pneumonia is a serious disease and can be life-threatening, whether one lung or both are infected. Double pneumonia can be fatal if it isnt treated. About 50,000 people die of pneumonia each year in the United States. Pneumonia is the eighth leading cause of death and is the leading infectious cause of death in the United States.
In general, the more segments of your lungs that are infected, the more severe the disease. This is the case even if all the infected segments are in one lung.
There is a possibility of complications, especially if you have an underlying illness or other high-risk factors. According to the American Thoracic Society , there may be long-term consequences of pneumonia, even for people who fully recover. Children who recover from pneumonia have an increased risk for chronic lung diseases. Also, adults who recover may have heart disease or weakened ability to think, and may be less able to be physically active.
What Are The Treatments For Pneumonia
Treatment for pneumonia depends on the type of pneumonia, which germ is causing it, and how severe it is:
- Antibiotics treat bacterial pneumonia and some types of fungal pneumonia. They do not work for viral pneumonia.
- In some cases, your provider may prescribe antiviral medicines for viral pneumonia
- Antifungal medicines treat other types of fungal pneumonia
You may need to be treated in a hospital if your symptoms are severe or if you are at risk for complications. While there, you may get additional treatments. For example, if your blood oxygen level is low, you may receive oxygen therapy.
It may take time to recover from pneumonia. Some people feel better within a week. For other people, it can take a month or more.
You May Like: How Many Years Between Pneumonia Shots
The Effects Of Pneumonia On The Body
Pneumonia is an infection in one or both lungs. Bacteria and viruses are the most common causes of pneumonia. Fungi can induce pneumonia, too. The infection causes inflammation in the air sacs of the lungs. This results in a buildup of fluid that makes it hard to breathe. Pneumonia can be a medical emergency, especially among high-risk groups like people over 65 and children 5 or younger.
Pneumonia typically affects the lungs, but complications can lead to problems in other areas of the body, too. These can be very serious and even deadly. Your risk, treatment, and recovery time depend on what caused the infection, your age, and any additional health issues you had before getting pneumonia.