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World Pneumonia Day 2020: Here's What You Need To Know About COVID-19 Pneumonia

COVID-19 Pneumonia: Pneumonia causes lung infection, which increases inflammation in the tiny air sacs inside your lungs. It fills the lungs with fluid and pus, which makes it difficult for a person to breathe.

World Pneumonia Day 2020: Heres What You Need To Know About COVID-19 Pneumonia

World Pneumonia Day: Risk of COVID-19 pneumonia is more in people above the age of 65

HIGHLIGHTS

  1. COVID-19 pneumonia can be fatal
  2. It causes shortness of breath or breathlessness
  3. It can be diagnosed with a blood test

World Pneumonia Day is observed on November 12. The day is meant to raise awareness about the causes, symptoms and crucial tips for prevention of pneumonia, which is a acute respiratory infection that affects the lungs. Pneumonia is known to be the single-largest infectious cause of death in children across the world, according to World Health Organization. In 2017, the disease took likes of 8,08,694 children under the age of 5. This accounts for 15% of all deaths of children under five years of age.

People who catch more severe form of the novel coronavirus get severe pneumonia in both lungs. COVID-19 pneumonia is a serious condition which can be fatal.


World Pneumonia Day: What you need to know about coronavirus and pneumonia

Pneumonia causes lung infection, which increases inflammation in the tiny air sacs inside your lungs. It fills the lungs with fluid and pus, which makes it difficult for a person to breathe. Symptoms include severe shortness of breath, fever, chest pain, chills, fatigue and cough.

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COVID-19 pneumonia can cause breathlessness or shortness of breath
Photo Credit: iStock

Pneumonia can occur as a complication of viral infections like COVID-19, the flu or even common cold.

"While most people with mild COVID-19 symptoms recover, some develop severe pneumonia that does not respond well to treatment," says Dr Nikhi Modi, Senior Consultant, Respiratory, Critical care And Sleep Disorder, Institutes of Critical Care, Indraprastha Apollo Hospitals, New Delhi. 

"Continuous oxygen deprivation in body can lead to damage to other organs, causing kidney failure, heart failure, and other life threatening conditions. Mostly, severe cases of COVID-19 manifest pneumonia apart from few mild to moderate cases, which can be managed easily with supportive care," he adds. 

Also read: Nutritionist Gives Diet Tips To Manage Pneumonia

Symptoms of COVID-19 Pneumonia

Early signs of COVID-19 include shortness of breath, dry cough and fever. It may also cause fatigue, chills, headache, loss of smell or taste or a sore throat. If COVID-19 infection starts to cause pneumonia, it may cause symptoms like rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath or breathlessness, dizziness, rapid breathing and heavy sweating.

According to WebMD, risk of COVID-19 pneumonia is more in people above the age of 65. Those who are 85 or older are at higher risk. People with health conditions like moderate to severe asthma, lung disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, liver disease and severe obesity are also at risk of getting more severe form of COVID-19.

Also read: COVID-19: Why Is Indoor Ventilation Important? Expert Reveals

COVID-19 Pneumonia diagnosis

COVID-19 pneumonia can be diagnosed on the basis of your symptoms and test results. A blood test can also show signs of COVID-19 pneumonia. Low lymphocytes and elevated C-reactive protein (CRP) may can signal pneumonia.

Pneumonia needs treatment in hospital with oxygen. Ventilator can help you breathe. A patient may also be given intravenous (IV) fluids to prevent dehydration.

COVID-19 Pneumonia Prevention

Practicing hand hygiene is an effective way to prevent COVID-19 pneumonia. Scrub your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. I washing hands is not possible, then use an alcohol-based hand rub can be helpful. Try not to touch your face, mouth, eyes until you have washed your hands. Stay home and avoid others as much as possible. Regularly clean and disinfect high-touch surfaces regularly.


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Also read: COVID-19: Want To Know How, When And Where You Can Catch Coronavirus? Read Here.

Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.

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