Pneumonia is swelling (inflammation) of the tissue in one or both of lungs. It’s usually caused by an infection. At the end of the breathing tubes in lungs are clusters of tiny air sacs. In pneumonia, these tiny sacs become inflamed and swell up with fluid.1 The germs which cause pneumonia are usually breathed in.
Basically, there are three types of pneumonia which affect adults: bacterial, viral and fungal. The bacterial one is treated with antibiotics. Due to possible resistance of the bacteria causing pneumonia to one prescribed antibiotic, a patient can be treated with an another one. Consequently, the antibiotic therapy in pneumonia may include taking two different antibiotics.
However, antibiotics have no effect on viruses, so viral pneumonia is managed with waiting out and drinking lot of fluids. The organism had to fight with the viruses with creating antibodies. Thus the immune system has to be boosted by food and vitamins to increase autoimmunity and increased susceptibility to infections. Fungal pneumonia is basically treated with antifungal medications.
There is a higher risk of developing pneumonia in babies and very young children, but also in elderly people or in people who smoke. Problems with weakened immune systems also increase the risk of developing pneumonia.
If an adult patient reports that he has a bad cough thick mucus (phlegm) which is yellow, green, brownish or even blood-stained, patient has a fever and difficulty with breathing, his case should be manage as he has pneumonia.
As the pharmacist concerned of that, you should be prepared for the following questions.
Should I still continue to take this antibiotic even if I feel much better?
Yes, you should. Antibiotics cure the illness, so it is very important for the full course of this prescribed medications. Do not stop any of the prescribed antibiotics abruptly.
What are the side effects of this antibiotics?
During taking antibiotics, your gut mikrobiota may be disturbed. This is because the antibiotics, which are killing bugs which has infected you, in the same time are wiping out good bacteria from your digestive system. To recover it, I would recommend to intake probiotics.
How often should I take probiotics?
Basically after 1 or 2 hours after taking antibiotics. After this time the antibiotics will have passed through your body and it is safe to take probiotics without worrying of the natural bacteria being destroyed.
How long should I take probiotics?
Normally during the antibiotics and after the course of the antibiotics, about one or two weeks to recover your gut mikrobiota.