Dr Chowdhury on pneumonia: Be informed, stay healthy

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Pneumonia is still a leading cause for death amongst children under five years of age. Dr Sudip Chowdhury, Senior Consultant in the Paediatrics and Neonates Department, Manipal Hospital, Gurugram, brought pneumonia into focus in an exclusive interview with THIP Media. Readers can access the full interview in the YouTube link below:

Q. What is pneumonia?

Pneumonia is the infection of the lungs. Microorganisms like viruses, bacteria or even fungi affect the lungs of children and young adults, or even adults. These organisms are mostly myoviridae bacteria or fungi.

Q. What are the causes of pneumonia?

Pneumonia arises with inhalations of aerosols which contain the organisms, both bacteria and viruses. The causes are certain bacteria like Streptococcus pneumoniae, mycoplasma pneumonia, Streptococcus staphorsius. Common viruses like influenza viruses, ANV, parainfluenza, adenovirus, and rhinovirus can cause pneumonia. There are also certain fungal causes of pneumonia: hypophysis. However, this is a lesser common cause. The most common is Streptococcus pneumoniae and viruses such as influenza, parainfluenza or adenovirus.

Q. Is it preventable? If so, how?

There are two types of pneumonia prevention: primary and secondary. In the former, precaution is to not let it happen in the first place. In the latter, safety measures are if you have any people nearby who already are infected with pneumonia, how to prevent it from causing you damage.

The first way of preventing pneumonia is vaccination. There are vaccines like Streptococcus pneumoniae (pneumococcal vaccine) and influenza vaccine. Consulting a  paediatrician, getting vaccinated at the right time will develop the immunity to prevent the infection. Besides, for influenza and other viral infections, you can opt for medications as per doctor’s prescription.

Healthy habits like hygiene (washing your hands often), not touching anything here and there will keep you safe. Do not touch dusty areas and un-sanitized places. Lessen your visits to hospitals, healthcare professionals, if not very much necessary. Avoid crowded places. These are sanitary measures.

Q. What are the symptoms of pneumonia?

Symptoms of pneumonia can be systemic symptoms (symptoms which occur over the body) and local symptoms (fever with chills or without chills, cough, body pains, tiredness, loss of appetite, etc.). Other symptoms like breathlessness, breathing really fast or with distress, productive or nonproductive cough, frequent cold, sneezing, and general unwellness can altogether be signs of this said disease.

Q. How is pneumonia managed or treated?

Pneumonia management is contingent upon how the infection is. In urban areas, the majority of kids are with very mild or moderate pneumonia, they can be managed at home. But it is required that you visit the doctor immediately to know the severity. If doctors confirm that it’s a pneumonia infection then get plenty of rest, a lot of fluids as the chances of dehydration with high fever increases. Doctors may prescribe painkillers as well. For symptoms like coughing, understand the reason behind this whether it is bronchospasm or irritation and receive treatment accordingly.

Q. Can home remedies treat it?

If infection and pneumonia is due to a vitro infection, then there’s no home remedies. In cases like this, the requirement is specific antibiotics. Some viruses have a fixed life; hence the infection will improve after some time. In these cases, home remedies give you a bit of support during this time. A little bit of love, tender care and mental support all of these make a lot of difference. The bottom line is vaccination at the right time. This is the primary measure.

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Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

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Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

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Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

Disclaimer: Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can futher read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

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Dr. Shikha Shiromani
Dr. Shikha Shiromani
A dental surgeon by education and medical writer by profession, Shikha is responsible for research and fact-check.
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