What is walking pneumonia? How is it different from regular pneumonia?
Pneumonia is an infection that inflames the air sacs in one or both lungs. The air sacs may fill with fluid or pus (purulent material), causing cough with phlegm or pus, fever, chills, and difficulty breathing. A variety of organisms, including bacteria, viruses, and fungi, can cause pneumonia.
Pneumonia can range in seriousness from mild to life-threatening. It is most serious for infants and young children, people older than age 65, and people with health problems or weakened immune systems.
Signs and Symptoms
The signs and symptoms of pneumonia vary from mild to severe, depending on factors such as the type of germ causing the infection, and your age and overall health. Mild signs and symptoms often are similar to those of a cold or flu, but they last longer.
Signs and symptoms of pneumonia may include:
–Chest pain when you breathe or cough
–Confusion or changes in mental awareness (in adults age 65 and older)
–Cough, which may produce phlegm
–Fever, sweating and shaking chills
–Lower than normal body temperature (in adults older than age 65 and people with weak immune systems)
–Nausea, vomiting or diarrhea
–Shortness of breath
Newborns and infants may not show any sign of the infection. Or they may vomit, have a fever and cough, appear restless or tired and without energy, or have difficulty breathing and eating.
When to see a doctor