There are millions of people all over the world who come down with a case of pneumonia each year. In the US alone, there are nearly 120 million cases annually. One common misconception about Pneumonia is that it is a disease in and of itself. The term describes the appearance of multiple symptoms together. This means the underlying cause of Pneumonia can vary significantly, with a common source being the flu. Keep reading to learn more about Pneumonia.
What To Know About Pneumonia And Its Treatment
Since Pneumonia is a collection of symptoms resulting from other conditions, it comes in many forms. When Pneumonia bacterial infection causes pneumonia, antibiotics may be able to help treat it. When Pneumonia is, instead, the result of a virus, there are a limited number of treatments available. This fact is particularly concerning since Pneumonia most commonly occurs in the very old and very young. Some other facts about Pneumonia include:
- It’s An Infection Of The Lungs – This condition results from one or more infections that cause the lungs to fill with fluid.
- It Affects Vulnerable Patients – Those who are immunocompromised, very young, or very old are those most likely to contract this condition. Over 100 million cases in the US each year are in children under five years of age.
- It Can Be Deadly – Of those 100 million cases, 10% become severe, with 880,000 deaths. The majority of these deaths are in those under two years of age.
- Hospitalization Is Frequent – Pneumonia rates as the second highest reason people are admitted to the hospital, second only to childbirth. Nearly one million adults are admitted to the hospital with Pneumonia each year, with 5% of these cases ending in the patient’s death.
- Bacterial Pneumonia Can Be Treated – When Pneumonia is the result of a bacterial infection, it’s easier to treat. Antibiotics are often effective in treating the condition and helping patients recover. Viral Pneumonia is much harder to treat.
- Some Pneumonia Can Be Vaccinated Against – Vaccinations can prevent some underlying causes of Pneumonia. This is one reason vulnerable patients should receive yearly flu vaccinations.
- Pneumonia Can Cause Lasting Symptoms – Those who develop Pneumonia can be at higher risk of developing chronic lung conditions. This is especially true for children who develop severe Pneumonia. There can be lasting cardiovascular impacts as well.
Staying Safe From Pneumonia Can Be Challenging
Pneumonia is a persistent condition that can hang on for a long time, even when treated actively. Some patients may struggle with it for as many as eight weeks before they recover fully. Further, the hospital is a common place to contract the condition. Those who are placed on ventilators have a higher risk of developing Pneumonia than those who are not. If you want to know how to protect yourself and your family from Pneumonia, reach out to your physician for guidance.