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Symptoms of Pneumonia

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Pneumonia is a serious infection that should be treated promptly. Contact your doctor if you have pneumonia symptoms or if your child has pneumonia symptoms.

Effects of Pneumonia on the Lungs
Pneumonia
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The symptoms of pneumonia include the following:

  • Fever or below-normal temperature
  • Chills
  • Sweating
  • Rapid breathing
  • Cough, may be dry or may produce sputum
  • Increased sputum
  • Chest or abdominal pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Pain through to the back
  • Pain with deep breathing
  • Rattle sound in the chest
  • Loss of energy, fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Headache
  • General muscle aches and pains
  • Lack of appetite

Severe symptoms that may occur in adults, especially the elderly, include:

  • Bluish color of the nails or lips due to diminished oxygen in the blood
  • Mental confusion (This is common in the elderly.)

Severe symptoms that may occur in babies and young children:

  • Flaring nostrils with each breath
  • Chest or ribs may suck in with each breath
  • Grunting sound with breathing

Revision Information

  • Beovic B, Bonac B, et al. Aetiology and clinical presentation of mild community-acquired bacterial pneumonia. Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis. 2003;22:584-591.

  • Pneumonia symptoms diagnosis and treatment. American Lung Association website. Available at: http://www.lung.org/lung-disease/pneumonia/symptoms-diagnosis-and.html. Accessed October 3, 2012.

  • Pneumonia in adults. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated March 25, 2013. Accessed April 3, 2013.

  • Pneumonia in children. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated March 18, 2013. Accessed April 3, 2013.

  • What are the signs and symptoms of pneumonia? National Heart Lung Blood Institute website. Available at: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/pnu/signs.html. Updated March 1, 2011. Accessed April 3, 2013.