Bacterial Pneumonia Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, And Treatment

Bacterial pneumonia – Causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment
Bacterial infection in the lungs is referred to as bacterial pneumonia, and it is mostly triggered by Streptococcus. Such infections are based on the state of the immune system of the human body. If the immune system is strong and healthy, a person will not be affected by such infections.

Who are at risk of contracting bacterial pneumonia?
One is exposed to bacterial pneumonia if they fall into any of these categories:

  • They have diabetes, heart disease, or asthma
  • Their age is 65 or more
  • Their diet does not provide them with the required minerals and vitamins
  • They are recovering from a surgery
  • They have a weak immune system
  • They are chain smokers and heavy alcohol consumers
  • They are suffering from viral pneumonia

What are the symptoms of bacterial pneumonia?
Bacterial pneumonia has an array of symptoms, which includes the following:

  • Stabbing chest pain
  • Pain and discomfort while breathing and coughing
  • A cough with profuse green, yellow, or blood-tinged mucus
  • Severe body shaking chills
  • Fever between 102 and 105°F
  • A loss of appetite
  • Moist and pale skin
  • Sweating
  • Muscle pain
  • Confusion
  • A headache
  • Rapid breathing or breathlessness
  • Lethargy or severe fatigue

Bacterial pneumonia is deadly for children of any age, including infants. In addition to the symptoms listed above, bacterial pneumonia in children may display bluish nails or lips.

What are the various types of bacterial pneumonia?
Medical science has categorized bacterial pneumonia into two types:

  • CAP (Community-acquired pneumonia): This type of bacterial pneumonia is triggered due to exposure to bacterial infections out of a healthcare setting. CAP spreads through breathing, sneezing, coughing, and skin-to-skin contact.
  • HAP (Hospital-acquired Pneumonia): This is caused due to exposure to germs in a closed healthcare setting, such as the doctor’s chamber or in a hospital. Also known as “nosocomial infection”, HAP is more antibiotic resistant and is, consequently, very difficult to treat.

Which bacteria results in the occurrence of bacterial pneumonia?

  • Streptococcus pneumoniae is the most common bacteria that triggers bacterial pneumonia.
  • Secondly, Haemophilus influenzae is also responsible for causing bacterial pneumonia.
  • In addition, if the immune system is weak, the infections from the bacteria like Staphylococcus aureus, Moraxella catarrhalis, Streptococcus pyogenes, Neisseria meningitidis, and Klebsiella pneumoniae also lead to bacterial pneumonia.

What are the diagnosis procedures followed to confirm that an individual is suffering from bacterial pneumonia?
Physicians follow the given steps to diagnose bacterial pneumonia:

  • Analysis of blood culture helps understand whether the bloodstream is infected by bacteria.
  • Proper checking is needed to find out the presence of heavy mucus.
  • A counting of blood cells is required to find out whether the number of white blood cells is at a healthy level.
  • Mucus sample is tested to look for any bacterial infection present.
  • An X-ray scan of the chest is undertaken to confirm the presence as well as the extent of bacterial infections.

What are the treatments of bacterial pneumonia?

  • A well-rounded treatment with medication at home helps a patient with bacterial pneumonia recover within three weeks. However, it may take longer if the immune system of the patient is relatively weaker.
  • In critical stages, hospitalization may be required to treat the patient with respiratory therapy and to offer intravenous antibiotics.
  • Timely intake of fluid is important to control dehydration in individuals affected by bacterial infections.

What are the prevention measures for bacterial pneumonia?

  • By itself, bacterial pneumonia is not contagious.
  • It is the infection that makes it contagious.
  • Opting for a pneumonia vaccine is the ideal way to prevent any kind of bacterial infections and also bacterial pneumonia. Such vaccines can be taken at any age as specified by the doctors.

Bacterial infections like bacterial pneumonia can develop serious complications or need prolonged treatment if the immune system of the patient is weak. It is better to consult a doctor as soon as possible once any of the aforementioned symptoms of bacterial infections are noted in an individual.