Pneumonia is a general term for inflammation of the lung tissue. Technically, pneumonia is a type of pneumonia; Because infection causes inflammation. However, doctors usually use the term pneumonia to refer to non-infectious causes of lung inflammation.
Common causes of pneumonia include exposure to airborne irritants at work or from your hobbies. In addition, some types of cancer treatments and dozens of medications can cause pneumonia.
Difficulty breathing — usually accompanied by a dry (nonproductive) cough — is the most common symptom of pneumonia. Specialized tests are necessary to reach a diagnosis. Treatment focuses on avoiding irritants and reducing inflammation.
The most common symptom of pneumonia is shortness of breath, which may be accompanied by a dry cough. If pneumonia is not detected or left untreated, you may gradually develop chronic pneumonia that can cause scarring (fibrosis) in the lungs.
Chronic pneumonia signs and symptoms may include:
shortness of breath
Unintended weight loss
When do you call a doctor?
Call your doctor any time you have trouble breathing, whatever the cause.
Pneumonia occurs when an irritant causes inflammation of the tiny air sacs in the lungs. The inflammation makes it difficult for oxygen to pass through the alveoli into the bloodstream.
Many irritants are associated with pneumonia and range from airborne fungi to chemotherapy drugs. But the main substance that causes inflammation remains unknown to most people.
Special reasons may include:
pharmaceutical. Many drugs can cause pneumonia, including antibiotics, many types of chemotherapy, and drugs that maintain a regular heartbeat. An overdose of aspirin can cause pneumonia.
Fungi and bacteria. Repeated exposure to certain fungi and bacteria can cause inflammation in the lungs. Certain varieties of fungi associated with pneumonia have a nickname, such as “farmer’s lung” or “hot tub lung.”
the birds. Exposure to feathers or bird feces is a common cause of pneumonia.
Radiation treatments. People who have radiation therapy to the chest, such as that done for breast or lung cancer, can develop pneumonia. Pneumonia can also occur after whole-body radiotherapy, which is necessary to prepare a person for a bone marrow transplant.
Professions or hobbies
Certain occupations and hobbies carry a high risk of developing pneumonia, including:
Farming. Many types of agricultural operations expose workers to mists from sprays and pesticides. Inhalation of airborne particles from moldy straw is one of the most common causes of occupational pneumonia. The rotting particles can also be inhaled during the harvesting of grain and hay.
Dealing with birds. Poultry workers, and people who keep or fatten pigeons, are often exposed to droppings, feathers, and other substances that can cause pneumonia.
Hot tubs and humidifiers. Mold cases in hot tubs can lead to pneumonia; Because the bubble effect produces a mist that can be inhaled. Home humidifiers are another common storehouse for mold.
Some chemotherapy drugs can cause pneumonia, and radiation therapy can affect the lungs. Mixing the two increases your risk of developing irreversible lung disease.
Pneumonia that goes away unnoticed or without treatment can cause irreversible lung damage.
In normal lungs, the lungs’ alveoli expand and relax with each breath. Chronic inflammation of the tissue lining each air sac can cause the alveoli to become less flexible. It becomes stiff like a dry sponge. This condition is called pulmonary fibrosis. In severe cases, pulmonary fibrosis can cause heart failure, respiratory failure, and death.