Five Top Pneumonia Questions For Your Doctor

  1. Am I at risk for pneumonia?
    Anyone can get pneumonia, but some people are at a higher risk than others. Talk with your doctor to determine if you are at high risk.
  2. What vaccines should I get?
    Pneumonia can be prevented. Get a flu shot every year to prevent seasonal influenza. The flu is a common cause of pneumonia, so preventing the flu is a good way to prevent pneumonia. Get vaccinated against pneumococcal pneumonia, the most common form of bacterial pneumonia,  if you are at high risk of getting this type of pneumonia.  Pneumococcal pneumonia vaccine is recommended for all children under the age of 5 and for adults with specific risk factors. Work with your doctor to determine if you should get the pneumonia vaccine.
  3. What are the symptoms of pneumonia?
    Symptoms of pneumonia may vary but the most common are cough (with some pneumonias you may cough up greenish or yellow mucus, or even bloody mucus), fever, chills and shortness of breath. If you are concerned you might have pneumonia, call your doctor immediately.
  4. What are the different types of pneumonia?
    There are several different types of pneumonia including bacterial, viral, mycoplasma and others. The type of pneumonia you have determine how it is treated. If you are diagnosed with pneumonia, ask your doctor what kind you have and what treatment is recommended.
  5. What else can I do to keep my lungs healthy?
    Good health habits can help prevent pneumonia and other lung diseases. Practice good oral hygiene and hand washing. If you are at higher risk for pneumonia Avoid crowds, people who are ill and exposure to lung irritants like cigarette smoke and air pollution.  

Reviewed and approved by the American Lung Association Scientific and Medical Editorial Review Panel.

Page last updated: June 7, 2024

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