Pneumonia can cause long-term health problems 2023


Ms. Alina Boey was living a normal day when she abruptly realized she had lost a dress size without making any lifestyle adjustments.

The fact that she had lost nearly 7 kilograms set off alarm sirens in her consciousness. It prompted her to undergo a comprehensive medical examination, and while her bloodwork was normal, a subsequent scan revealed that her right lung was inflamed.

Before she was diagnosed with pneumonia, a lung inflammation that typically follows bacterial and viral respiratory infections, she had to undergo multiple hospital visits and tests. However, this was only the beginning of her health problems.

Ms. Boey developed a variety of skin conditions, including hives, and a pre-existing condition, eczema, swelled up.

According to her physician, these symptoms could be a result of pneumonia-induced immunity problems, she told CNA.

Visits to the doctor are “exhausting” for Ms. Boey, as she continues to combat her health issues.

In terms of life quality, it is difficult, particularly mentally, I believe.

The Effects of Pneumonia

While Ms. Boey’s symptoms are not life-threatening, others who are not vaccinated against pneumonia may experience more severe complications. This includes cardiac attacks in patients with underlying cardiovascular disease.

“Patients may be unaware that they have underlying heart diseases such as coronary artery disease or blockages,” said Dr. William Kristanto, a cardiologist at Farrer Park Hospital’s Cardiac Centre.

“When a patient is admitted for pneumonia, a cascade of inflammatory responses is triggered, which in turn sets off the heart blockage condition and causes heart attacks.”

According to Dr. Kristanto, the majority of patients confined for pneumonia have compromised immune systems or are older than 65.

Dr. Julio Ramirez, principal research scientist at the Norton Infectious Diseases Institute, stated that his center’s research over the past few years has shown that despite the fact that a “significant number” of patients hospitalized for pneumonia are discharged and sent home, their health may not be as good as before.

Dr. Ramirez of Norton Healthcare in Louisville, Kentucky, remarked, “They never return to baseline, or other medical problems emerge after pneumonia.”

“At this time, the best approach to think about pneumonia is that it is not just a respiratory condition. It is a systemic condition that impacts the lungs, the heart, the liver, and the kidneys.”

He added that pneumonia may not be a three-week illness, but rather one that can affect a person for years to come.

And for the elderly, contracting pneumonia may reduce life expectancy.

The Need fro Vacciantion

Dr. Kristanto stated that vulnerable groups, such as the elderly, do not comprehend the importance of vaccination against pneumonia, despite the fact that they may require it the most.

He added that some elderly patients also have a tendency to conflate influenza and pneumonia vaccinations. They believe that pneumonia vaccinations are only necessary during flu season or when traveling.

“It’s only when I take the time to explain to them that pneumococcal vaccination is also available in addition to the influenza vaccine that they realize ‘oh, you mean there are more than one respiratory illness out there,'” he said.

As a result of last week’s World Immunisation Week, he implored family physicians to dispel such misconceptions so that patients will have a better understanding and be more likely to be vaccinated.

Similarly, Dr. Ramirez urged individuals to get vaccinated against pneumonia.

Multiple viruses and bacteria can induce pneumonia, according to physicians.

According to HealthHub, the common cold, influenza, COVID-19, and pneumococcal disease are common causes.

“A single episode of pneumonia does not confer immunity against all viruses and microbes in the environment. Dr. Kristanto emphasized the continued importance of receiving all available vaccinations against pneumonia and influenza.

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