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VNA of Care New England
by Carson-DeWitt R

Symptoms of Pneumonia

Pneumonia is a serious infection that should be treated promptly. Contact your doctor if you have pneumonia symptoms or if your child has pneumonia symptoms.
Effects of Pneumonia on the Lungs
Pneumonia
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The symptoms of pneumonia include the following:
  • Fever or below-normal temperature
  • Chills
  • Sweating
  • Rapid breathing
  • Cough, may be dry or may produce sputum
  • Increased sputum
  • Chest or abdominal pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Pain through to the back
  • Pain with deep breathing
  • Rattle sound in the chest
  • Loss of energy, fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Headache
  • General muscle aches and pains
  • Lack of appetite
Severe symptoms that may occur in adults, especially the elderly, include:
  • Bluish color of the nails or lips due to diminished oxygen in the blood
  • Mental confusion
Severe symptoms that may occur in babies and young children:
  • Flaring nostrils with each breath
  • Chest or ribs may suck in with each breath
  • Grunting sound with breathing

References

Beovic B, Bonac B, Kese D, et al. Aetiology and clinical presentation of mild community-acquired bacterial pneumonia. Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis. 2003;22(10):584-591.
Community-acquired pneumonia in adults. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T115170/Community-acquired-pneumonia-in-adults. Updated August 15, 2016. Accessed November 10, 2016.
Community-acquired pneumonia in children. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T113670/Community-acquired-pneumonia-in-children. Updated May 17, 2016. Accessed November 10, 2016.
Pneumonia symptoms, causes, and risk factors. American Lung Association website. Available at: http://www.lung.org/lung-health-and-diseases/lung-disease-lookup/pneumonia/symptoms-causes-and-risk.html. Accessed November 10, 2016.
Signs, symptoms, and complications. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute website. Available at: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/pnu/signs. Updated September 26, 2016. Accessed November 10, 2016.

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