Information for Patients
Pneumonia is an infection in one or both of the lungs. Many germs, such as bacteria, viruses, and fungi, can cause pneumonia. You can also get pneumonia by inhaling a liquid or chemical. People most at risk are older than 65 or younger than 2 years of age, or already have health problems.
Symptoms of pneumonia vary from mild to severe. See your doctor promptly if you
- Have a high fever
- Have shaking chills
- Have a cough with phlegm that doesn't improve or gets worse
- Develop shortness of breath with normal daily activities
- Have chest pain when you breathe or cough
- Feel suddenly worse after a cold or the flu
Your doctor will use your medical history, a physical exam, and lab tests to diagnose pneumonia. Treatment depends on what kind you have. If bacteria are the cause, antibiotics should help. If you have viral pneumonia, your doctor may prescribe an antiviral medicine to treat it.
Preventing pneumonia is always better than treating it. Vaccines are available to prevent pneumococcal pneumonia and the flu. Other preventive measures include washing your hands frequently and not smoking.
NIH: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
Salmonella is the name of a group of bacteria. In the United States, it is a common cause of foodborne illness. Salmonella occurs in raw poultry, eggs, beef, and sometimes on unwashed fruit and vegetables. You also can get infected after handling pets, especially reptiles like snakes, turtles, and lizards.
- Abdominal cramps
- Possible nausea, vomiting, and loss of appetite
Symptoms usually last 4-7 days. Your health care provider diagnoses the infection with a stool test. Most people get better without treatment. Infection can be more serious in older adults, infants, and people with chronic health problems. If Salmonella gets into the bloodstream, it can be serious. The usual treatment is antibiotics.
Typhoid fever, a more serious disease caused by Salmonella, is not common in the United States. It frequently occurs in developing countries.
NIH: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases