Infectious pneumonia is an inflammation of the lungs caused by the pathogenic activity of bacteria, viruses, fungi in the lung cavity. Infectious pneumonia often becomes a complication of concomitant diseases of the respiratory tract, inflammation of the respiratory system.
Depending on the type of pathogen, the symptomatic picture of infectious pneumonia also appears. Any type of pneumonia requires compulsory treatment in order to avoid serious complications in children and adults.
Causes of occurrence
The main reason for the occurrence of infectious pneumonia is the defeat of the body by pathogenic media, mainly of a bacterial nature. Among the main pathogens are coccal infections, chlamydia, adenoviruses, respiratory strains of viruses, tubercle bacillus. The infection is transmitted by airborne droplets and is highly contagious.
Inflammation of the lungs is triggered by the following factors:
- reduced immunity, congenital or acquired autoimmune diseases;
- long experience of smoking;
- chronic intoxication of the body against the background of impaired renal and liver function;
- recurrent respiratory infections;
- premature babies, elderly and frequently ill patients;
- postoperative period;
- long-term drug therapy;
- chronic obstructive pulmonary pathology;
Anomalies in the structure or development of internal organs can contribute to the development of pneumonia. So, in case of violation of the anatomical norm of the lungs or when the cavity of the lung structures is squeezed by other organs, the quality of ventilation of the lungs may change. If the lungs are not completely filled with oxygen, mucus settles and becomes infected in the lower parts of the lung cavities.
The course of infectious pneumonia is characterized by the stage of development of the disease. The disease has several stages of development:
- incubation period from 2-3 days from the moment of inflammation;
- active phase and the appearance of specific symptoms;
- extinction of signs (with adequate therapy);
- period of restoration of the body and lung tissue.
With weakened immunity, pneumonia is often characterized by a wave-like course. If inflammation is an independent pathological process, the first symptoms appear 2-3 days after infection. Signs of infectious pneumonia are:
- violation of respiratory function;
- general malaise, lethargy, drowsiness;
- high body temperature;
- rapid breathing;
- blush on the cheeks, cyanosis of the skin in the area of the nasolabial folds;
- soreness in the chest, aggravated by breathing, coughing, deep inspiration.
The course of pneumonia in children of different ages and adults differs sharply. Newborns may have no temperature, but symptoms of chronic intoxication and respiratory failure are rapidly developing. In adults, on the contrary, the symptoms of respiratory failure appear at the stage of progressive pneumonia, and at first patients complain of high fever, pain in the sternum, and malaise.
Diagnosis of the disease consists in studying the patient’s complaints, physical examination, auscultation of the lungs, listening to heart sounds. Other important diagnostic measures are:
- blood and urine tests;
- chest x-ray;
- fluorography (to determine gross morphological changes in the lungs);
- sputum analysis for the differentiation of tuberculosis disease.
In case of questionable analyzes and data of instrumental studies, magnetic resonance imaging, Mantoux test, radiopaque methods of studying the pulmonary pattern may be required. At the same time, a cardiologist is consulted to exclude myocarditis, pericarditis in a sick person.
Disease treatment methods
Treatment begins with the appointment of broad-spectrum cephalosporin antibiotics. After receiving data on the type of infectious agent, a decision is made on the need to correct treatment.
Several types of antibiotics are often prescribed. If the causative agent is fungi or viral strains, antibiotic therapy is combined with antiviral or antifungal drugs. The course of therapy against an infectious inflammatory process in the lungs is as follows:
- antibiotic therapy (antibiotics of a broad spectrum of action or directed action against the identified pathogen);
- bronchodilators for stopping coughs, spasms of the bronchial tree (Berodual, Berotek, Lazolvan, Pulmicort);
- hormonal drugs in the acute course of pneumonia, along with other inflammatory diseases of the respiratory system (adrenocorticotropic hormone, Cortisone);
- expectorants and mucolytics for the best excretion of phlegm from the lungs (Ambrobene, ACC);
- remedies for pain and fever (Ibuprofen, Ketoprofen, Nurofen, Mig, Citramon C);
- vitamin complexes to increase the body’s resistance.
Additionally, they reduce the stress on the digestive tract through diet. During illness, aggressive and difficult to digest foods are excluded. It is important to observe an active drinking regime and all medical recommendations.
Therapy of infectious pneumonia is always complex, aimed at eliminating the main cause of inflammation, suppressing the pathogenic activity of bacteria, and restoring the body. Treatment of the disease usually takes place in an inpatient setting, but after improvement in the condition and positive dynamics, therapy can be continued at home or on an outpatient basis. After a course of antibiotic therapy, probiotic treatment is necessary to restore the microflora of the gastrointestinal tract.
The main prevention against pneumonia is timely treatment and elimination of provoking factors. By following simple rules, you can significantly reduce the risk of infectious pneumonia. To prevent the disease, it is important:
- to direct forces to strengthen immunity, especially during the seasons of respiratory infections;
- normalize nutrition, give up bad habits, tidy up sleep and wakefulness;
- timely vaccinate against pneumococcal infection;
- do not visit places of public gatherings with high epidemiological risks.
Unfortunately, no preventive measure can guarantee protection against infectious pneumonia, given the contagious nature of the disease. Prevention is aimed only at reducing the risks of inflammation of the lung tissue.
Complications with timely treatment are rare, so it is so important to consult a doctor if you suspect lung, respiratory and respiratory system diseases. The main complications are:
- pustular foci in the lung tissue;
- morphological changes in the pleura;
- respiratory disorder;
- bronchial asthma;
- infectious toxic shock;
- persistent decrease in hemoglobin;
Despite the effectiveness of modern therapy against pneumonia of any kind, cases of child and adult mortality are still encountered. Mortality is due to the weakening of the body and untimely or inadequate therapy.
The prognosis for the disease is predominantly favorable, especially with the right treatment. With a complicated course, complications are likely to develop, up to a lethal outcome. It is because of the complex course of pneumonia that it requires a mandatory visit to a doctor and hospitalization.