Pneumonia is generally a mild illness; however, in some instances, it can worsen and even require hospitalization in some cases. Pneumonia is an acute infection of the lung caused by different bacteria or viruses.
Pneumonia causes a lot of inflammation within the lungs and is associated with excess phlegm. This makes it difficult for oxygen to transfer across the lungs' air sacs and get into the bloodstream. When your body's cells can't get enough oxygen, it's difficult for them to work as they should.
If you've contracted pneumonia, you will likely experience a persistent cough, fever, shaking chills and shortness of breath. Normally, pneumonia will last about two weeks; however, it's not uncommon for people to feel fatigued for a month or so after they've technically recovered.
For pneumonia to be properly diagnosed, a doctor will first listen to your lungs. If your doctor believes you have pneumonia, he or she will likely recommend a chest x-ray. In some cases, a blood test, CT scan or other forms of testing may be done to ensure a correct diagnosis.
If you've been diagnosed with pneumonia, you will be instructed to drink plenty of fluids, get lots of rest and take over-the-counter medications to control your fever and other symptoms. A doctor will also prescribe antibiotics if you have bacterial pneumonia.
If you think you might have pneumonia, consider visiting your local CareNow. At CareNow, we have 28 locations throughout the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex (with more opening soon!), along with locations in Las Vegas, Denver, Nashville, Austin, and Kansas City. Visit CareNow.com for a complete list of locations near you.
Disclaimer: Patients' health can vary. Always consult with a medical professional before taking medication, making health-related decisions or deciding if medical advice is right for you.