Bronchopneumonia or lobular pneumonia is a form of pneumonia that triggers bronchial inflammation. The bronchi are air passages that provide air into the lungs. An individual with this condition might have difficulty breathing due to the constricted airways. Due to the inflammation, the lungs might not receive enough air.
What are the indications?
The indications of bronchopneumonia strikingly resemble the other types of pneumonia. The condition often starts with flu-like symptoms that become severe over a few days. The usual symptoms include:
- Cough with mucus
- Chest pain or pleurisy due to inflammation from excess coughing
- Shortness of breath
- Rapid breathing
- Muscle aches
- Confusion or delirium especially among the elderly
The symptoms might be severe among those who have weakened immune systems or other current ailments.
Among children and infants, they have different symptoms. Even though coughing is the common symptom among infants, other symptoms include:
- Rapid heart rate
- Chest muscle retractions
- Low blood oxygen levels
- Loss of interest in eating, feeding or drinking
- Difficulty sleeping
The treatment for bronchopneumonia include both home measures and medical treatment.
A viral case of bronchopneumonia does not generally require medical care unless it is severe. The condition settles on its own in 2 weeks. The fungal or bacterial cases might require medications.
Antibiotics are prescribed by the doctor if bacteria are the cause. In most cases, the condition gets better within 3-5 days after starting antibiotics. Make sure that the prescribed course is completed to prevent the infection from returning.
In some cases, the doctor might prescribe antivirals to shorten the length of the illness and severity of the symptoms.
An individual might require care in a healthcare facility if the infection is severe and if the individual is included in the following criteria:
- Over the age of 65 years old
- Chest pain
- Difficulty breathing
- Rapid breathing
- Signs of confusion
- Low blood pressure
- Requires assistance with breathing
The treatment in the hospital might include intravenous antibiotics. If the level of blood oxygen is low, oxygen therapy might be required.