Pneumonia

  • World Pneumonia Day - November 12th, 2014

    World pneumonia day may have come and gone, but it's something that should definitely be talked about. During the winter months, pneumonia can be a really danger to anyone, but especially to those with compromised immune systems and chronic lung diseases. November 12th is World Pneumonia Day, as named by the American Lung Association. Pneumonia is actually one of the leading causes of death worldwide, according to the American Lung Association.

    If you are over the age of 55 or have a chronic lung disease, it's recommended that you get a pneumonia vaccine. There are two types of pneumococcal vaccines. Pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine (PPSV23) is the most common, and given to adults between the ages of 19 and 64 with medical conditions, like asthma, COPD and certain kidney diseases. You would only need to get it every 5 years if your doctor sees the need for it.

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  • Symptoms and Warning Signs of Respiratory Diseases

    Catch any disease in the early stages is extremely important, and lung diseases and maladies are no different. The sooner a chronic disease or an acute illness is detected, the easier and quicker it will be treated, and the higher chance you have of living through it. Unfortunately, the signs and symptoms of the early stages of diseases like COPD and even lung cancer are usually subtle and often overlooked until the disease has progressed into the advanced stages.

    Since this is often the case, it's important to consider family history of chronic diseases, so you will know to pay close attention to your physical state and to get tested for any diseases that run in your family. If you had relatives who died of lung cancer, you will need to pay special attention, and your doctor will likely order a regular screening to be done.

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  • What is Pneumonia?

    Pneumonia is an infection in the lungs. Sometimes it is in only one lung and in other cases it affects both lungs. The infection can be any type of microbial infection – bacterial, viral, fungal, or even mycoplasma. There are over 30 causes for pneumonia. Because of this, it is not always treated the same way.

    Viruses are not affected by antibiotics, so viral pneumonia cannot be treated with antibiotics. Unfortunately, a full third of all pneumonia cases in the U.S. are due to viruses that attack the respiratory system. And in children under five years old, this is the most common cause. Of viral pneumonia cases in adults, it is typically the flu virus that causes it, although severe acute respiratory syndrome, rhinovirus (the common cold), respiratory syncytial virus, the herpes simplex virus, and others can cause viral pneumonia. In addition, viruses can lead to secondary bacterial pneumonia by weakening the immune system.
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