Pneumonia infects the lungs and is caused by viruses, bacteria, and fungi. Pneumonia causes tiny air sacs in your lungs called alveoli to fill them with fluid.
The complication of the Covid-19 caused by the new coronavirus called SARS-CoV-2 is also associated with pneumonia. This blog looks at pneumonia vs. Covid symptoms, analyzing the differences, signs to look out for, and how it is treated.
The infection with the Covid-19 virus starts when respiratory droplets containing the virus enter your upper respiratory tract. The disease progresses into your lungs as the virus multiplies, causing pneumonia to develop. Would you like to understand how this happens?
Generally, the oxygen you breathe into your lungs passes through your bloodstream inside the alveoli, the tiny sacs in your lungs. However, an infection of Covid-19 damages the alveoli besides the surrounding tissues. When your immune system begins fighting the virus, the inflammation results in the fluid and dead cells accumulating in your lungs. These factors withhold the transfer of oxygen, leading to symptoms like coughing and shortness of breath.
People affected by Covid-19 pneumonia may also develop acute respiratory distress syndrome, a progressive respiratory failure occurring when the air sacs in the lungs are filled with fluid making it challenging for them to breathe. Mechanical ventilation is necessary for people with ARDS for help when breathing.
The symptoms of Covid-19 pneumonia are similar to various types of viral pneumonia. The similarity makes it challenging to determine what is causing the patient’s condition without testing for Covid-19 or any other respiratory infections.
Research is ongoing to determine the differences between Covid-19 pneumonia and other types because the information from the analysis can potentially help in diagnosing and understanding how Covid-19 pneumonia affects the lungs.
One study using CT scans and lab tests to compare the clinical features of various types of pneumonia with the Covid-19 variety observed that people with the latter were likely to have:
Pneumonia affecting both lungs instead of one.
The CT scan revealed that the lungs had a characteristic ground-glass appearance.
In addition, abnormalities were observed in some lab tests assessing liver function.
As described earlier, the symptoms of Covid-19 pneumonia are similar to various other types of pneumonia. The symptoms include fevers, chills, shortness of breath, chest pain when breathing deeply or coughing, and tiredness.
Mild to moderate symptoms are associated with most cases of Covid-19 pneumonia. The CDC confirms my pneumonia is usually present in some affected individuals. However, sometimes the Covid-19 pneumonia variety is more severe, and Chinese studies confirm 14 percent of cases were severe and five percent were critical.
People affected by severe Covid-19 pneumonia experience serious bouts of the condition besides developing breathing and low oxygen levels. Pneumonia progresses to ARDS in critical cases.
Suppose you or anyone around you experiences challenges in breathing, persistent feelings of pressure or chest pain, rapid heartbeat, confusion, trouble staying awake for moving around. In that case, it is time for you to seek prompt attention from the emergency room in Harker Heights, TX. A visit to emergency rooms shouldn’t scare you as the symptoms affecting you indicate a severe disorder needing attention from medical professionals.
Senior adults over 65 are at an increased risk of severe illnesses due to Covid-19 besides those living in a long-term care facilities such as nursing homes or assisted living facilities. The elderly encounter challenges trying to visit the emergency room 76548. However, seniors in assisted living facilities can undoubtedly seek help from others to reach the ER near them.
People with underlying health issues regardless of age are at a higher risk of vulnerability to Covid-19 pneumonia. Various health conditions putting people at a higher risk include asthma, diabetes, heart conditions, liver disease, obesity, and chronic kidney disease. These people experiencing any symptoms described above must visit the emergency room near me to seek assistance as soon as possible.
People with a weakened immune system increase the risk of severe Covid-19 illness, especially if their immune system is weaker than expected. People may have a weak immune system because of medications like corticosteroids or drugs they take for an autoimmune condition or are undergoing treatments for cancer, HIV, or received an organ transplant. Here again, people are recommended not to wait until their condition worsens but to contact ER Harker Heights, TX, to evaluate themselves.
Physicians use material from a respiratory sample to detect the presence of viral genetics when diagnosing Covid-19 pneumonia. Chest x-rays and CT scans also help in the diagnostic process enabling the physician to visualize changes in the lungs caused by Covid-19 pneumonia. In addition, lab tests are beneficial in assessing the severity of the condition.
Presently, no therapy is ready or approved for Covid-19 pneumonia. However, research is ongoing on various drugs which the medical fraternity believes could act as potential therapies. Treatment for Covid-19 pneumonia focuses on ensuring the easing of symptoms to receive sufficient oxygen. Patients with Covid-19 pneumonia receive oxygen therapy, and severe cases require the use of a ventilator.
You may experience lung damage from Covid-19 pneumonia, leaving lasting effects on you. You may wonder how long Covid pneumonia lasts but must remember most people who had this condition continued having lung lesions visible through a CT scan even after leaving the hospital. It indicates you can still develop pneumonia after Covid recovery, and the effects may remain with you for 15 years or more before they plateau.
It is practically impossible to prevent Covid-19 pneumonia from developing, but you can undoubtedly adhere to the preventive measures recommended by physicians to lower your risks of this devastating pandemic.