The duration of treatment for pneumonia depends on many factors, including the patient’s self-discipline. Do not treat the disease as a common cold. Therapy for pneumonia should be carefully selected and carried out under the supervision of a specialist. Only in this case will the treatment be effective and fast.
Duration of treatment for pneumonia
The treatment time for pneumonia directly depends on the carrier of the disease, the stage of pneumonia, the patient’s response to the therapy and the general well-being of the patient.
The duration of the treatment process with an acute form of the disease can last long enough, and the patient may require hospitalization.
The patient is admitted to the hospital if:
- symptoms of impaired consciousness are noticed;
- Blood pressure is reduced and reaches critical values (less than 100/60 mm Hg);
- the patient’s age is more than 65 years;
- there is acute respiratory failure;
- there are concomitant serious illnesses;
- the body is in the stage of dehydration;
- cough is accompanied by the discharge of sputum interspersed with pus;
- body temperature increased (39-40 ° C);
- the level of urea in the blood exceeds 7 mmol / l;
- diagnosed with bilateral pneumonia.
Each feature is equal to 1 point. If 3 points or more are scored, then a hospital is recommended to the patient. At 0 points, the patient is allowed home treatment.
If pneumonia is suspected in a newborn, regardless of the severity of the illness, the baby is admitted to the hospital. Antibiotics are also used to treat the infant. In case of complications arising from the background of the disease, the child is transferred to the intensive care unit.
With intrauterine lung damage in an infant, symptoms of the disease will appear immediately after birth. If the baby is infected in the hospital, then the symptoms will manifest themselves for 2-4 days. The incubation period in this case lasts from several hours to 7 days. Congenital pneumonia in a child of early form without accompanying complications is cured in 14 days. Due to the underdevelopment of the immune system in infants, the treatment process may be delayed.
Treatment of community-acquired pneumonia in a newborn continues:
- 5 days – mild form;
- 10 days – moderate;
- Day 21 is difficult.
Atypical and nosocomial pneumonia is treated for 15 to 56 days. This is influenced by the severity of the disease. Pneumonia in adolescents with weakened immunity lasts 14-21 days. If the doctor has allowed the patient to be treated at home, most often drug therapy will not take more than 7-10 days in time. The treatment course of acute forms of the disease can last 21 days or more.
Right-sided pneumonia, as well as left-sided, formed against the background of a viral infection, in addition to antibacterial treatment lasting 7-10 days, needs the addition of antihistamines (at least 5 days) and antiviral drugs (7-10 days). On the second day of the disease, sputum with streaks of blood appears, so the treatment is supplemented with the use of expectorant drugs (5-7 days).
After treatment, an adult patient undergoes medical supervision for at least 6 months. Once every three months, the patient visits a therapist and is monitored by a pulmonologist. For a baby who has had pneumonia, the observation period by doctors lasts at least a year.
Factors affecting duration
The duration of treatment depends on the causative agent of the pneumonia. Therapy for pneumococcal infection is on average 5 days. It will take at least 3 weeks to treat pneumonia caused by legionella or staphylococcus. If the disease has developed against the background of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, then the treatment will take from 21 to 42 days. With the development of complications, treatment can last from 6 to 8 weeks.
Clinical and morphological features of the course of the disease also affect the duration of treatment. Therapy of the focal form of the disease (part of the alveoli becomes inflamed) is short-term and has favorable prognosis for a cure without complications. When a patient suffers from a segmental form (the inflammatory process affects a segment of the lung), then full recovery will occur no earlier than 2 weeks. Treatment of lobar pneumonia (the focus of inflammation is located in the right or left lobe of the organ) takes place in a hospital. The duration of therapy can be 1 month. With a croupous form (2 parts of the lung are inflamed), the patient’s condition is regarded as critical. Treatment lasts 2 months or more.
The duration of treatment can be affected by severe chronic diseases, immunodeficiency and congenital diseases. The healing process in this case increases by 2-3 times.
Necessary conditions for a speedy recovery
To cure the disease as soon as possible for patients with intoxication, it is necessary to observe strict bed rest for at least 3-4 days. However, to prevent congestion in the lungs during this period, adult patients should get up for 15-20 minutes at intervals of every 5-6 hours. After the normalization of the temperature regime, it is necessary to take short daily walks in the fresh air. Personal hygiene rules must be followed.
During therapy, the patient is advised to observe an abundant drinking regimen. You can use not only pure water, but also mineral water without gases, juices, herbal teas and fruit drinks. The recovery of the body will occur faster if the diet of a sick person includes light, but at the same time nutritious food. The menu must include vegetables, fruits, whole grains, low-fat soups and broths, steamed meat and fish dishes.
Quitting smoking is an important prerequisite for a quick recovery. Tobacco smoke has a negative impact not only on adults but also on children. Parents should not smoke when their child is sick. In cases where it is impossible to quit smoking, parents should thoroughly wash their hands with soap and water and change clothes before communicating with their child.
If a baby is ill with pneumonia, for his speedy recovery it is necessary to maintain an optimal regime in the room. The air temperature is within 34-36 ° С, and the humidity is 60-70%. Free swaddling must be applied. Clothing must not impede movement. The accumulated mucus from the nose should be sucked out regularly. This will help your baby breathe freely and prevent respiratory distress. In the supine position, the newborn may experience congestion in the lungs, which aggravates the course of the disease. Therefore, 2 times an hour it is necessary to change its position of the body, turning it from side to side.
Possible complications of pneumonia
Often, the disease provokes intrapulmonary destructive processes and pleural complications:
- Pneumonia can lead to parapneumonic or synpneumonic pleurisy.
- Another complication is pleural empyema, when the pleura becomes inflamed with the formation of purulent contents. In this case, the abscesses are emptied into the bronchus, which leads to a strong cough with sputum discharge, which has purulent blotches.
- Acute distress syndrome, formed against the background of the disease, leads to the filling of the lung with fluid. There is a violation of the functioning of the organ and a stop of gas exchange.
- Respiratory failure (hypercapnia, hypoxemia, shortness of breath) is a common complication.
- Severe forms of the disease can provoke the development of pulmonary infarction. After its treatment, fibrosis of the lung tissue forms, which interferes with normal breathing.
- Taking large doses of antibiotics can disrupt the work of the pancreas and liver.
How to avoid complications
To avoid complications of the disease, it is necessary to consult a doctor when the first alarming symptoms appear. Pathology identified at the initial stages of development lends itself to effective and rapid treatment.
During the period of antibiotic therapy, it is not recommended to exceed the doses of drugs prescribed by the doctor and the permissible periods of treatment. If the patient’s illness is protracted, non-toxic antibiotics may be used.
To restore immunity during treatment, immunomodulatory agents and vitamin complexes are prescribed. Breastfeeding helps to strengthen the immune system of the newborn.
Despite highly developed medicine, mortality from pneumonia is 15% for children under 5 years of age and 4% for adult patients. Therefore, health professionals not only disseminate information about the disease and methods of prevention in forums, but also introduced World Pneumonia Day, which is celebrated annually on November 12.