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Pneumonia Symptoms, Causes, and Risk Factors

Pneumonia is inflammation in your lungs caused by an infection. You have two lungs, one on each side of your chest each lung has separate sections called lobes. Normally as you breathe air moves freely through your trachea or windpipe, then through large tubes called bronchioles, and finally into tiny sacs called alveoli.

Your Airways and alveoli are flexible and springy, when you breathe in each air sac inflate like a small balloon and when you exhale the sacs deflate. Small blood vessels called capillaries, surround your alveoli. oxygen from the air you breathe passes into your capillaries, then carbon dioxide from your body passes out of your capillaries into your alveoli so that your lungs can get rid of it when you exhale.

Signs and Symptoms of Pneumonia

Pneumonia symptoms can vary from mild to severe depending on the type of pneumonia you have your age and health. The most common symptoms of pneumonia are cough with some pneumonia you make off up greenish or yellow mucus or even bloody mucus fever which may be mild or high.
Pneumonia Symptoms, Causes, and Risk Factors

Shaking chills shortness of breath which may only occur when you climb stairs. Additional symptoms of pneumonia sharp or stabbing chest pain that gets worse when you breathe deeply or cough. Headache excessive sweating and clammy skin loss of appetite, low energy, and fatigue. Confusion, especially in older people symptoms, also can vary depending on whether your pneumonia is bacterial or viral.

In bacterial pneumonia your temperature may rise as high as 105 degrees F this pneumonia can cause perfuse sweating and rapidly increased breathing and pulse rate. Lips and nail beds may have a bluish colour due to lack of oxygen in the blood.

If you have pneumonia your Airways or lungs have an infection caused by germs such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, or parasites. Your airwaves catch most germs in the mucus that lines your trachea bronchi and bronchioles.

Hair like cilia lining the tubes constantly push the mucus and germs out of your Airways where you may expel them by coughing. Sometimes germs make it past your mucus and cilia and enter your alveoli. Normally cells of your immune system attack these germs which keep them from making you sick. 

However, if your immune system is weakened due to age illness or fatigue. Pneumonia-causing germs can overwhelm your immune cells and begin to multiply. Your bronchioles and alveoli become inflamed as your immune system attacks the multiplying germs.

Pneumonia Symptoms, Causes, and Risk Factors

The inflammation causes your alveoli to fill with fluid making it difficult for your body to get the oxygen it needs. If you have low burn ammonia one lobe of your lungs is affected, if you have bronchopneumonia many areas of both lungs are affected.

Pneumonia may cause the following symptoms, difficulty breathing, chest pain, coughing, fever and chills, confusion headache, muscle pain and fatigue.

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Pneumonia Causes

Pneumonia can lead to serious complications, respiratory failure occurs when your breathing becomes so difficult that you need a machine called a ventilator to help you breathe. Bacteremia occurs when the bacteria causing your pneumonia, move into your bloodstream where they may travel to infect other organs. In some cases of pneumonia, a large collection of fluid and pus called an abscess may form inside one of your lungs. If an abscess forms around the outside of your lung it's called an empyema.

Possible treatments for pneumonia include antibiotics if the cause is bacterial or a parasite, antiviral drugs if the cause is a flu virus, antifungal medication if the cause is a fungus rest and drinking plenty of fluids and over the counter or OTC remedies to manage your fever aches and pains.

Pneumonia Symptoms, Causes, and Risk Factors

Many different germs can cause pneumonia there are five main causes of pneumonia bacteria, viruses, Michael plasmas, other infectious agents, such as fungi, various chemicals. If you have viral pneumonia you also are at risk of getting bacterial pneumonia. understanding the cause of pneumonia is important because pneumonia treatment depends on its cause.

Pneumonia Risk Factors

Anyone can get pneumonia but some people are at a higher risk than other risk factors that increase your chances of getting pneumonia include cigarette smoking, recent viral respiratory infection occult laryngitis influenza etc. Difficulty swallowing due to stroke dementia Parkinson's disease or other neurological conditions chronic lung disease such as COPD bronchiectasis or cystic fibrosis cerebral palsy.

Other serious illnesses such as heart disease liver cirrhosis or diabetes living in a nursing facility impaired consciousness loss of brain function due to dementia, stroke, or other neurologic conditions.

Pneumonia Symptoms, Causes, and Risk Factors

If you have severe pneumonia you may be admitted to the hospital and given intravenous antibiotics and oxygen.

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