What are the Symptoms of Bronchial Pneumonia?

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What is Bronchial Pneumonia?

Pneumonia is defined as a disease where the lungs have become inflamed due to infection caused by bacteria, fungi or viruses. One particular type of pneumonia is bronchial pneumonia which is said to cause thousands of deaths every year. Also called bronchopneumonia, the disease particularly attacks the bronchial tubes of either one or both of the lungs. The disease is more common among babies and children as well as in elderly individuals.

What are the Symptoms of Bronchial Pneumonia?

Symptoms of bronchopneumonia can differ depending on the type of organism causing the infection. Prompt evaluation of the patient and diagnosis is often necessary so appropriate treatment can be given. Most advanced stages of bronchopneumonia may require immediate hospitalization. The most common symptoms of the disease are persistent cough, difficulty in breathing, fever, unexplained fatigue and chest pains.

High Fever

Bronchial pneumonia is frequently associated with persistent fever. Chills may sometimes precede this febrile condition. In the elderly group, fever may not always be present, thus it is frequently recommended that elderly individuals who present with weakness and cough for about a day or more should be seen by a physician for evaluation.

Cough

Those with bronchial pneumonia also experience persistent dry cough. Coughing can be difficult and painful at times, and patients may also produce phlegm that has blood on it. Some patients may experience rapid respiration, shallow breathing and shortness of breath. These conditions persist because the irritation and inflammation in the lungs prevents the organ from obtaining oxygen. Deprivation of oxygen may sometimes result in the bluish discoloration of the lips and fingernails which often need immediate medical attention. Wheezing may also be experienced.

Chest Pain and Unexplained Fatigue

Unexplained fatigue and chest pains may also be manifestations of bronchial pneumonia. The chest pain is usually sharp and happens during breathing. This is often caused by the inflammation in the lungs. Patients may also frequently experience unexplained fatigue due to the body’s response to infection, coupled with the deprivation of oxygen and excessive coughing.

Other Symptoms

Affected patients may present with nausea and vomiting. Confusion or alteration in mental status may also be observed. When this occurs, the condition is said to need emergency care.

Why is it Important to Know What are the Symptoms of Bronchial Pneumonia?

Knowing the different symptoms of bronchial pneumonia can often help patients spot these symptoms when they have the disease. It is then recommended that they go to their doctor for evaluation as soon as these symptoms are observed. Patients are frequently diagnosed based on their clinical presentations, medical history, physical examinations and results of diagnostic tests. A chest X-ray may be done to evaluate the lungs. Blood tests may also help. A sputum culture is frequently done to identify the organisms causing the disease. Treatment is then focused in eradicating these organisms and providing relief to the symptoms of patients.

References

Mayo Clinic: Pneumonia, https://www.mayoclinic.com/health/pneumonia/DS00135/DSECTION=symptoms

UMMC: Pneumonia Symptoms, https://www.umm.edu/patiented/articles/what_symptoms_of_pneumonia_000064_3.htm