1. What are the early signs of Pneumonia?
Early signs of pneumonia may include fever, chills, and shortness of breath. Persons may also complain of cough with greenish, yellowish or even bloody mucus. The breathing is shallow and rapid with chest pain that worsens on deep breathing. Children may also complain of loss of appetite and energy with these complaints.
2. What causes Pneumonia?
Pneumonia is caused by an infection by viruses, bacteria, fungi or other microorganisms. The most common bacteria that leads to pneumonia is Streptococcus pneumoniae. Common viruses include influenza virus, and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) which causes pneumonia. Risk factors such as weak immunity, smoking, and alcohol can increase the risk of pneumonia.
3. What is the recovery period in Pneumonia?
Recovery after pneumonia varies from person to person as well as the severity of the illness. Some people are able to resume normal activities within a week, while some could take even a month. On an average, recovery is complete within 6 weeks.
4. Is Pneumonia fatal?
Pneumonia can be either a mild or a life threatening condition depending on the progress of the disease. In some cases, there could be complications such as septic shock, lung abscess, pleural effusion, empyema, pleurisy or even lung failure which can be fatal if not controlled and treated in time.
5. When should one consult a doctor during Pneumonia?
One should visit a doctor for pneumonia if there is pain in chest on breathing, persistent cough, fever beyond 102 F or more, and cough containing pus. During treatment of pneumonia, if there are complaints such as rapid breathing, irregular heart rate, bluish tint in fingertips, lips or skin, anxiety, fatigue or losing consciousness, one should promptly visit a doctor.