Home Lung and airwaysPneumonia Symptoms, Risk factors and Complications of pneumonia

Symptoms, Risk factors and Complications of pneumonia

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

Pneumonia is a prevalent disease; it is the infection that causes the most hospitalizations year after year. Although it is usually caused by bacteria, viruses such as chickenpox or influenza can ideally cause this disease.

We speak of pneumonia when the tissue of the lungs becomes inflamed due to an infectious agent. Unlike bronchitis, which affects the bronchi, pneumonia is inflammation of the alveoli, where the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide with the bloodstream occurs.

We have said that it is widespread, but this does not mean that it is not dangerous. The complications of pneumonia maybe not only severe but can become deadly. This disease is the one that causes more infantile deaths, causing many annual deaths. Next, at FastlyHeal, we explain what the complications of pneumonia are.

Symptoms of pneumonia

A series of common symptoms characterize pneumonia:

  • Tos
  • Fever
  • Coughing up and coughing up phlegm
  • Chest pain that worsens with breathing

As it gets more complicated, the symptoms can get worse:

  • Trouble breathing
  • Excessive sweating, increased heart and breathing rates
  • Change in the sound of breathing

Possible complications of pneumonia

Poorly treated pneumonia can lead to severe complications that can put your health at risk. Here we explain what the possible complications of pneumonia may be:


One of the big problems that pneumonia can bring is a recurrence, repeatedly falling into the same infection in a concise space of time. When these recurrences occur, it is necessary to evaluate the patient’s condition in-depth to observe if they have immune deficiencies, if the anatomy of the Lung has been altered or if there is an underlying disease that is causing it.

Chronic pneumonia

When there is an affectation in the alveoli for more than a month without the disease disappearing, or there is improvement in the symptoms, it is called chronic pneumonia. The longer the disease lasts, the more it will cost to eradicate it, and at this point, it can become tough to heal the Lung completely. In these cases, it is highly recommended to have a CT scan or a bronchoscopy to rule out that there is no lung cancer.

Necrotizing pneumonia

Among the complications of pneumonia, we find the formation of cavities in the lung tissues that end up destroying this organ. Over time, these cavities can lead to lung abscesses, lesions larger than 2 centimeters with pus, and inflamed tissue.

Respiratory sepsis

This is another complication of pneumonia that can be fatal, a global affectation to the entire body, causing a significant drop in blood pressure, tachycardia, and damage to different body organs.

Pleural effusion

We speak of pleural effusion when fluid accumulates around the Lung due to the inflammation caused by pneumonia. If not appropriately treated, pleural effusion can also lead to severe complications, as it can become superinfected and pus accumulates, requiring drainage to restore normal conditions.

Risk factors for complication

Different risk factors can cause a complication of pneumonia. Here we explain some of these cases in which you should be especially careful:

  • People over 65 are a risk group when suffering complications of pneumonia.
  • People who suffer from underlying diseases that weaken their general condition. These diseases are chronic lung diseases, heart failure, type 2 diabetes, alcoholism, and malnutrition.
  • Another risk of complication is extraordinary medical situations, such as there is no response to treatment, the germs are unusual, or there is a generalized infection.
  • If the patient’s blood tests show imbalances in white blood cells, low oxygen levels, or anemia.
  • Outside of purely medical factors, social factors can also influence the development of anemia complications. Homeless people, psychiatric patients, or people with dementia may not be constant or even not follow the treatment, facilitating that complications can occur.

This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to Complications of pneumonia , we recommend that you enter our Lung and respiratory tract category.

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