Bronchial pneumonia is basically an infection of the bronchial tubes in the lungs and considered as the most prevalent form of pneumonia among infants. In case a child shows symptoms such as high fever, loss of appetite, productive cough, wheezing, weakness and difficulty breathing, a doctor should be consulted right away.
Always bear in mind that bronchial pneumonia is one of the main causes of death among infants, thus requires prompt treatment to prevent complications from occurring. If you want to learn more about this condition and the measures to carry out, you can enroll in a first aid course in your area today.
What are the possible causes?
Bronchial pneumonia can affect infants more than adults since their respiratory system are still immature and not capable of fighting the infection. The main cause of bronchial pneumonia is the presence of a bacterium called pneumococcus. The other strains of bacteria blamable for the condition include mycoplasma pneumonia and staphylococcus aureus. Even viruses such as influenza or adenovirus can also cause the condition. In some cases, the infection can develop secondary to a cold or illness such as measles.
The doctor will assess the breathing pattern of the infant and examine the lungs using a stethoscope. Unusual noises and sounds are the initial indications that there is a lung infection. In most cases, the doctor will request for a chest X-ray to determine the type, extent of infection as well as the exact location. Additionally, samples of the blood and nasal secretions are sent to the laboratory for testing to determine the possible causes.
Treatment for bronchial pneumonia
When it comes to bronchial pneumonia due to bacteria, the doctor treats it with antibiotics. Always bear in mind that there are no medications for the viral form, but the infection will clear on its own. It is vital to keep the infant properly hydrated and help him/her breathe using a humidifier.
The doctor will also prescribe fever medications to keep the fever under control. In case the condition is severe, the infant requires hospitalization involving antibiotics and administration of intravenous fluids.
The most effective method to prevent the child from acquiring bronchial pneumonia is through vaccination. There are vaccines against pneumococcus, measles and flu that are readily available for the first months of the baby’s life. It is important to ensure that the infant eats properly and gets enough rest and fluids.
It is also important to maintain a smoke-free environment. Additionally, observe proper hygienic measures such as frequent hand washing to minimize the risk of acquiring bronchial pneumonia.
Always remember that timely treatment of bronchial pneumonia is vital for the fast recovery of the child as well as prevent the development of complications.