Does pneumonia leave a scar on your lungs?

Does pneumonia leave a scar on your lungs?

Even with severe pneumonia, the lung normally heals and suffers little long-term damage, however there may be some scarring of the lung (rarely leading to bronchiectasis) or lung surface injury (the pleura). This can occur in any age group but is more common in people who have chronic respiratory diseases such as asthma or emphysema.

Pneumonia can lead to permanent loss of lung function. If you have severe pneumonia you may need physical or occupational therapy to learn how to live with a disability. Most people who die from pneumonia do so because they cannot cope with the complications of their illness, for example if they are elderly or have another health problem.

Deaths due to pneumonia are most common among older adults living in the community. The number of deaths due to pneumonia has been on the rise since the 1990s. This increase may be due to better diagnosis of pneumonia cases or increased awareness of this disease. However, it may also be due to more serious consequences of pneumonia, for example if an individual does not respond to treatment.

People who survive one episode of pneumonia are likely to recover completely from subsequent episodes. However, each episode increases your risk of developing long-term health problems. For example, people who have frequent episodes of pneumonia are more likely to develop heart disease or diabetes.

What happens if pneumonia is left untreated?

Untreated pneumonia can also result in a lung abscess, which causes part of the lung tissue to die. In extreme circumstances, respiratory failure may ensue. With quick identification and treatment, these problems can be lessened or prevented entirely. To diagnose pneumonia, your doctor will use a variety of methods. They might start with a physical examination, followed by certain lab tests or imaging studies. A sample of blood may be sent to a laboratory for analysis of its white cell count and differentials. The doctor may also order x-rays or other scans of the chest to look for evidence of infection or other problems.

Pneumonia is usually caused by viruses or bacteria. Viruses that can cause pneumonia include the rhinoviruses, coronavirus, and adenovirus. Bacteria that can cause pneumonia include Streptococcus pneumoniae (the pneumococcal organism), Haemophilus influenzae, and Mycoplasma pneumoniae.

The most common symptom of pneumonia is cough. Coughing helps clear mucus from the lungs and moves infectious particles so that your body's immune system can fight them off. If you have trouble breathing, call your doctor right away. Otherwise, you may not feel any pain when you have pneumonia. But it can be serious if you don't seek medical attention promptly.

Pneumonia can be treated with antibiotics. Avoid taking antibiotics if you aren't sure they're needed.

Does pneumonia weaken your lungs permanently?

Pneumonia does not generally result in lasting lung damage. In rare cases, pneumonia causes infected fluid to form around the exterior of the lung, a condition known as empyema. This may require surgery to treat.

Generally speaking, if you get properly diagnosed with pneumonia and receive appropriate treatment it should not cause long-term problems for your lungs.

Pneumonia is very common among the elderly or those with underlying medical conditions such as COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease). It can also be caused by a variety of other factors including smoke, dust, chemicals, and certain viruses.

People who have had pneumonia often have increased risks of developing chronic respiratory diseases such as asthma and bronchitis. However, this risk usually disappears once you have healed from your current infection or episode of pneumonia.

What happens if someone contracts pneumonia?

If the pneumonia is severe in any of the circumstances listed above, it might result in death. In rare situations, more significant issues may arise, such as: The lungs have undergone life-threatening alterations, necessitating the use of a breathing machine. The fluid that surrounds the lung (pleural effusion) has caused pressure on the heart to increase, possibly leading to heart failure.

Alterations to the brain and/or spinal cord may also occur with severe pneumonia. These changes are usually not serious but could be a sign of more serious underlying medical conditions. Spinal meningitis, for example, may lead to paralysis or loss of sensation in the legs.

Children can die from complications of pneumonia even though they do not have any other signs of illness. For example, a child who is poorly fed, dehydrated, and/or infected with a germ that causes sepsis (high fever, poor blood flow to parts of the body) could die despite only having pneumonia.

The most common complication of pneumonia is re-infection. If a person has had one episode of pneumonia, he/she is likely to have another episode at some point in his/her life. Re-infection can happen anytime after the first episode of pneumonia. The virus that causes the infection may still be present in the person's airways or lungs.

What is the most common complication of pneumonia?

Even with therapy, certain persons with pneumonia, particularly those in high-risk categories, may develop complications such as:

  • Bacteria in the bloodstream (bacteremia).
  • Difficulty breathing.
  • Fluid accumulation around the lungs (pleural effusion).
  • Lung abscess.

Can bronchitis turn into pneumonia?

Bronchitis can escalate to pneumonia if you do not get treatment. Bronchitis is a lung illness caused by an inflammation of the airways leading to the lungs. Pneumonia is a lung illness that can affect one or both lungs. If untreated bronchitis is not treated, the infection can spread from the airways to the lungs. This second stage of the disease is called "acute bronchitis turning to pneumonia."

Pneumonia is more serious than bronchitis. With pneumonia, your respiratory system is affected by bacteria or viruses. The virus or bacteria may come from someone else or the organism may be present in the environment. For example, bacteria that cause pneumonia are found in the air and water around us. When you breathe in these organisms, they can settle in your lungs where they can grow and infect cells.

People often think that pneumonia means full-body pain. In fact, the body's defense mechanism is responsible for any pain you feel during pneumonia. Your immune system is trying to fight off the invading organism. Thus, when you have pneumonia, you experience pain because of this powerful response by your body.

The most common cause of pneumonia is Streptococcus pneumoniae (the pneumococcal strain). This bacteria can be found in the nose, throat, and stomach of humans. When someone with pneumococcal pneumonia eats or drinks something contaminated with the bacteria, they can pass it on to others.

About Article Author

Linda Segura

Linda Segura has been working in the health industry for over 20 years. She has experience in both clinical and administrative settings. Her love for people and desire to help them led her into public health where she can use her skills most effectively.

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