Inflammation of the lungs in an adult: symptoms, signs and treatment of pneumonia

Inflammation of the lung in an adult, or in scientific medical language - pneumonia , is characterized by inflammation of the lung tissue and alveoli, while the mucous membrane and lung tissue are affected, inflammatory exudate is formed.

Most often this lung disease has an infectious etiology, but the inflammatory process in them can begin after inhaling irritating and poisonous substances, after getting into the airway. In addition to other cases, pneumonia is diagnosed mainly in children, due to the formation of the respiratory system and the imperfection of the immune system.

Inflammation of the lungs in adults occurs due to weakened immunity, due to which the body can not resist the penetration of pathogenic microbial flora and its neutralization. Inflammation develops, the bacteria multiply, releasing toxic products of their vital activity. There is a general intoxication of the body, manifesting by the rise of the body temperature, by the weakness of , by the chill

.Rarely, but it happens that the inflammation of the lungs is abnormal: without the temperature and cough .

Let's look at the symptoms, signs and treatment of pneumonia in adult patients.


Pneumonia, why does it appear and what is it?

Pneumonia is an inflammation of the lungs of an infectious nature involving all the structural elements of the lung tissue and its obligatory lesion.

There are two types of pneumonia: hospital and community-acquired.

The hospital type of pathology ( hospital) is especially dangerous for patients of any age, since it is caused by pathogens resistant to the effects of most antibiotics and other potent antibacterial agents.

To completely destroy some types of pathogenic microorganisms( for example, Staphylococcus aureus), it is necessary to "clean" the hospital institution every two weeks, which in practice is impossible.

Infection outside the hospital ( out-of-hospital) also occurs because bacteria enter the lower respiratory tract. In most cases, the disease occurs after a lesion of streptococci.

This is the most dangerous pathogen, which in 10% of cases multiplies so rapidly that it is not possible to achieve a pronounced effect from the use of traditional treatment regimens, and the patient's death occurs.

Statistics of infection with other types of pathogenic bacteria are presented below.

  1. Streptococcus .People with impaired immunity and those who have had respiratory infections( in the absence of adequate and timely treatment) are sick - 31%.
  2. Chlamydia .Adult patients( mostly male) aged 18 to 45 years - 14%.
  3. Mycoplasma .Adolescents and adults under 30 years old - 14%.
  4. Hemophilus coli .Patients with chronic lesions of the pulmonary system( bronchi, lungs), workers in harmful industries, smokers - 6%.
  5. Legionella .People of any age with chronic non-infectious pathologies, significantly weakening the immune system. The disease caused by legionella and streptococci, can result in the death of the patient!- 5 %.
  6. Enterobacteria .Patients with diseases of the liver, kidney and endocrine system( cirrhosis, diabetes, hepatitis, pyelonephritis, etc.) - 4%.
  7. Staphylococcus a ( including Staphylococcus aureus ).Elderly people over 50 years old, as well as patients who have had viral infections( in particular influenza) - about 1%.
  8. The unknown driver is 25%.

What kind of pneumonia happens?

Pneumonia can be:

  1. focal - that is, occupy a small hearth of the lung( bronchopneumonia - respiratory departments and bronchi);
  2. segmental - extend to one or more segments of the lung;
  3. share - capture the proportion of the lung( the classic example of lobar pneumonia - croupous pneumonia , where the predominantly affected alveoli and the adjacent area of ​​the pleura);
  4. discharge - fusion of small foci into larger ones;
  5. total - when pneumonia spreads to the entire lung.

What is the incidence and mortality from pneumonia?

1. Incidence of .In 15-17 years - 236 cases of pneumonia per 100,000 population. Among the total population, community-acquired pneumonia is 1200 cases per 100,000, and hospital - 800 people per 100,000 hospitalizations per year. And more often men are ill.

2. Mortality .In the 30 years of the 20th century - 24%.In the 1940s - 12%.Currently, from 1 to 5-6% of people at a young age and 15-20% among the elderly.

Prevalence of pneumonia

The incidence of pneumonia depends on many factors:

  1. level of life;
  2. social and marital status;
  3. working conditions;
  4. contact with animals;
  5. travel;
  6. the presence of bad habits;
  7. contact with sick people;
  8. individual characteristics of a person;
  9. the geographical spread of a particular pathogen.

Pneumonia remains one of the most common causes of death of children and the elderly at the present time, especially in social institutions( orphanages).

The frequency of pneumonia in elderly patients is sharply increased at a time when they are treated in hospital facilities for other diseases.

There are great differences in the etiology of hospital and community-acquired pneumonia.

Inflammation of the lungs in an adult: signs and symptoms

Keep in mind that some types of pathogenic bacteria( eg legionella) are resistant to standard antibiotics, therefore, the effectiveness of the treatment requires a determination of the type of pathogen. Without this, there may be a lack of results from therapy and the death of the patient.

It's important not to miss the onset of the disease!

First signs of pneumonia

The first symptom of !With the development of inflammatory processes in the lungs in most patients( more than 40%) appears temperature .In the first 1-2 days, it may not rise to high marks and keep at a level of 37-37.3 degrees.

As the bacterial colonies grow, the temperature rises, the general condition of the patient worsens, symptoms of intoxication appear. The temperature at this stage can reach 38.5-39 degrees and is usually accompanied by the following symptoms:

  1. chills;
  2. listlessness;
  3. deterioration( or total absence) of appetite;
  4. fever;
  5. headache;
  6. sleepiness.

The second symptom of pneumonia, which appears at an early stage, is a cough. In the first days of the disease, he is hysterical, dry, and painful. Sputum excretion does not occur during this period.

Cough agonizes the patient at any time of the day, intensifies at night, disturbing the quality of sleep. In some cases, it may be accompanied by shortness of breath, but this symptomatology is typical, as a rule, for 3-4 days of illness.

By the end of the third day of the disease, the symptoms of pneumonia begin to appear in the patient, so most patients seek medical help at this time. To recognize the inflammatory processes in the lung tissue, you need to know the characteristics of the symptomatology at this stage.

Clinical manifestations of pneumonia

Scheme of development of manifestations of inflammation of lung tissue:

  1. Beginning - acute .Fever, as a rule, is combined with chills. Although it may be absent in weakened patients and elderly citizens.
  2. Cough .Appears from the first hours of illness. In the beginning it is dry, then productive. The color and volume of sputum are important.
  3. Chest pain is associated with breathing, the result of involvement in the inflammatory process of the pleura.
  4. Small symptoms of : headache and muscle pain, weakness, decreased appetite, fatigue. These are indicators of severe intoxication.

The main symptoms of pneumonia


Cough is the main symptom that is determined in any age group of patients with lung damage. A few days after the onset of the pathology, the cough becomes moist, mucous sputum is released from the respiratory tract, which may contain pus yellow-green color.

To speed up the excretion of sputum from the respiratory tract, the doctor prescribes mucolytics or expectorants that increase the formation of mucous secretions and facilitate its removal from the lungs.

Remember! Cough in pneumonia is usually intense, but in some cases, the patient may not experience discomfort associated with this symptom. Duration of cough may be from 7 to 14 days. Sometimes coughing continues after recovery and lasts about 10 days. This symptom should be monitored by a doctor, as it may indicate insufficient treatment and the presence of an infectious focus in the lungs or bronchi.

Breathing pain

If the patient tries to take a deep breath, he can feel the pain behind the sternum. This symptomatology suggests that the pleural pathway is involved in the pathological process. Pleural injury can lead to pleurisy - a serious disease characterized by inflammation of the pleura.

Pleurisy can be dry or exudative with formation to form liquid contents.

Shortness of breath

Shortness of breath often occurs during coughing. At rest, this symptom worries patients of the adult age group rarely, but such a situation is not excluded, so it is important to monitor any changes in breathing and well-being.

Dyspnea occurs with severe lesion and allows one to assess the severity of the condition.

Evaluation of respiratory failure( MD) for clinical manifestations - severity:

  1. DN 1 - dyspnoea at exercise.
  2. DN 2 - dyspnea at rest.
  3. DN 3 - dyspnea at rest accompanied by the connection of the auxiliary respiratory musculature


The heart rate deviates from normal values ​​to 140 beats per minute and correlates with the severity of the condition.

Pale skin

Skin begins to fade already from the first days of the disease, therefore it is possible to suspect the presence of a pathological process in the body before the appearance of typical symptoms.

If a patient has fever, the temperature is kept high, pale skin will be accompanied by increased sweating.

In severe cases, the appearance of bluish areas is possible - this is a very dangerous sign, requiring immediate attention to a specialist. Mucous membranes also pale, there is increased dryness of the lips and mouth.


Headache with pneumonia is increasing in nature and increases with sharp movements or turns of the head. The maximum severity of the pain syndrome is determined on the 3-4th day of the disease. Starting from the fifth day, painful sensations fade away and disappear at the end of the seventh day.


Disturbance of consciousness and the appearance of hallucinations occur only in 3-4% of cases and indicate a critical level of intoxication and extensive lesion area. If the patient has had at least a one-time disturbance of consciousness, a decision is made about urgent hospitalization, since such patients must be under constant medical supervision.

Diagnosis of pneumonia

What diagnostic methods are used:

  1. Chest X-ray.
  2. Microscopic examination of sputum with Gram staining.
  3. Sputum culture on nutrient media.
  4. General and biochemical analysis of blood.
  5. Investigation of the gas composition of blood.

Bilateral pneumonia: symptoms of

Bilateral lesion is the most unfavorable clinical form of pneumonia, which in the absence of competent therapy can result in the death of the patient. Treatment of this type of inflammation is carried out in a stationary environment, so the benefit of a life prediction depends on the speed of treatment to the doctor and the timeliness of the provision of medical care.

A distinctive symptom of bilateral pneumonia is blue lips and limbs .This sign arises, as there is a violation of gas metabolism in the tissues of the pulmonary system and the flow of blood through the vessels of the bronchial tree and lungs slows down. The temperature for this form of pneumonia is always high: from the first day of the disease, it can hold at 38.5-39 ° and rise higher as the disease progresses.

Other symptoms of bilateral pneumonia:

  1. marked dyspnea;
  2. prolonged painful cough;
  3. pain in the chest area;
  4. prolonged sneezing and other symptoms of colds;
  5. is inconsistent and shallow breathing.

In the presence of such symptoms, in no case can you stay at home and try to heal yourself. Mortality from bilateral lung lesions is about 13% of the total number of cases, so treatment should only take place under the supervision of specialists. In addition, the patient may need to correct treatment therapy, which is impossible at home.

Concomitant symptoms and complications

Not always signs of pneumonia are related to the pulmonary system. Since the disease is most often of an infectious nature, viruses and bacteria can spread through the body and penetrate other tissues and organs, causing concomitant complications, which specialists consider as a kind of symptom of the underlying disease.

For example, if there is a sign of iron deficiency anemia and referring to a hospital about this, the patient can find out that his lung is inflamed.

Changes can affect the cardiovascular system. Most often, these patients are determined by myocarditis - inflammation of the heart muscle. Pathology is extremely dangerous and can cause death if it is not diagnosed in time.

Heart failure is another symptom of a neglected form of lung inflammation that occurs in almost half of patients, therefore in a hospital all patients with pneumonia are necessarily examined by a cardiologist.

Complications of pneumonia

Terrible complications of pneumonia can be:

  1. Abscess and gangrene of the lung.
  2. Pleurisy.
  3. Empyema of the pleura.
  4. Obstruction.
  5. Acute respiratory failure.
  6. Endocarditis.
  7. Pericarditis.
  8. Meningitis.
  9. Pulmonary edema.
  10. Sepsis.

Inflammation of the lungs in an adult: treatment of pneumonia

The most important in the treatment of pneumonia are antibiotics .Their choice is carried out depending on the microorganism that caused pneumonia.

Also used drugs that dilate the bronchi and dilute sputum inside and in the form of inhalation, corticosteroids, internal saline solutions, oxygen.

Sometimes pleural puncture and bronchoscopy is performed.

Physiotherapeutic methods of treatment are often used: UFO, vibration massage, exercise therapy, paraffin, ozocerite.

Recommendations and tips

To prevent dehydration and accelerate recovery, you must observe the drinking regimen and consume enough water, compotes and tea. Doctors advise to include in the diet berry fruit drinks - they help reduce the temperature and contain a large amount of ascorbic acid needed to support weakened immunity in the period of illness.

Prolonged intoxication is also capable of leading to the death of the patient, so the only correct option would be to go to the hospital if any symptoms of pneumonia are detected.

Related Videos

Pneumonia: signs, symptoms and treatment of pneumonia

Health TV.Pneumonia( inflammation of the lungs) - inflammation of the lung tissue, usually infectious origin with a predominant lesion of the alveoli( development of inflammatory exudation) and interstitial lung tissue.

Inflammation of the lungs symptoms

Video channel "Catch the Answer!".

The first symptom of pneumonia is a fever. In other words, the immune system tries to self-reanimate those cells of the body that are destroyed during the development of the disease. Accordingly, the body spends too much energy, which often leads to the fact that the body temperature rises sharply and does not subside for several days.

The second symptom of the inflammatory process is perspiration. As a rule, it is also associated with the fact that healthy lung cells are gradually destroyed, obeying the inflammatory process. Accordingly, a person begins to feel a regular perspiration, which eventually develops into a dry cough. It, in turn, can be characterized by regularity and sharpness. In other words, a person's cough is more like a bout, rather than the usual reaction of the body, say, to a cold.

The third symptom of pneumonia is the gradual appearance of sputum. This is due to the fact that the body surrenders, and the immune system completely loses its power. In other words, cough becomes wet, and the discharge becomes as abundant as possible. It is worth noting that getting rid of this disease is not easy and it is better to contact a doctor right away, rather than trying to treat the lungs yourself.

Inflammation of the lungs: how to treat pneumonia

The telecast "About the most important".

Inflammation is a disease that can easily die in old age. How to detect inflammation of the lungs in time and how to avoid complications. Pneumonia: risk factors. How correctly to be treated with antibiotics to avoid addiction. What cabbage reduces the risk of cancer.

Inflammation of the lungs is a dangerous pathology with a rather high probability of death. Some underestimate the seriousness of the disease, but such an approach without exaggeration can cost the life of the patient. Symptomatology of pathology can be different, but the main signs are determined in almost 90% of patients with pneumonia, so early diagnosis is not difficult.

From the timely treatment depends entirely on the prognosis of life and health, therefore, to treat any signs of the disease should be taken seriously.