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Pneumonia Blog

Related terms: Bronchopneumonia, Community-acquired pneumonia

Pneumonia in Early Childhood Tied to Higher Odds of Asthma

Posted 6 Mar 2015 by

FRIDAY, March 6, 2015 – Children who contract pneumonia during the first three years of life appear to face a higher risk of developing asthma, new research suggests. These findings raise concern that early childhood respiratory problems may have an enduring and negative impact on growing lungs. "This supports the idea that the roots of chronic illness in adult life may be the events that occur in early life," said study co-author Dr. Fernando Martinez, a professor of pediatrics and director of the Arizona Respiratory Center at the University of Arizona in Tucson. "Early life is a time when organs are developing very fast, and can be affected and altered by outside stimuli or negative events, which may then carry into adulthood," he said. "So here," added Martinez, "we have shown that when you have a severe episode of pneumonia in early life there are consequences, such as lower levels ... Read more

Related support groups: Asthma, Pneumonia

Common Class of Drugs May Be Linked to Pneumonia Risk

Posted 3 Mar 2015 by

TUESDAY, March 3, 2015 – Drugs used to treat a wide range of health problems may be associated with an increased risk of pneumonia, a new study suggests. Anticholinergic medications include those used for conditions such as allergies (for example, Benadryl), overactive bladder (including Ditropan), depression (for example, doxepin) and insomnia (Sominex, etc.). "Our study is the first to address whether oral anticholinergic medications affect the risk of pneumonia in older people," senior author Dr. Sascha Dublin, an associate investigator at the Seattle-based Group Health Research Institute, said in an institute news release. "This is important because so many older people use these medications, and pneumonia is such a common cause of illness and death in this age group," Dublin explained. Researchers looked at more than 1,000 patients with pneumonia, aged 65 to 94, and a group of ... Read more

Related support groups: Pneumonia, Bentyl, Hyoscyamine, Dicyclomine, Atropine, Librax, Donnatal, Belladonna, Scopolamine, Robinul, Levsin, Glycopyrrolate, Antispasmodic, Transderm-Scop, Scopace, Symax Duotab, Clidinium, Levsin SL, Methscopolamine, Propantheline

Viruses Increasingly Behind Child Pneumonia Cases

Posted 26 Feb 2015 by

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 25, 2015 – Young children are at increased risk of becoming seriously ill with pneumonia – but unlike in years past, the cause is usually a respiratory virus, a large U.S. study finds. The researchers found that 66 percent of pneumonia cases in the more than 2,000 children in the study were caused by viruses alone. Just 8 percent had solely bacterial causes, and 7 percent were known to be caused by both bacteria and viruses. And, those infections can end up being serious, the study authors said. "Pneumonia is one of the most common causes of hospitalizations among children," said the study's lead author, Dr. Seema Jain, a researcher at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Pneumonia is a general term for an infection of the lungs, and it can be caused by a range of viruses, bacteria or even fungi. The disease is often thought of as a problem ... Read more

Related support groups: Pneumonia, Viral Infection, Respiratory Syncytial Virus

Pneumonia Raises Heart Disease Risk for Years: Study

Posted 20 Jan 2015 by

TUESDAY, Jan. 20, 2015 – Older patients hospitalized with pneumonia appear to have an increased risk of heart attack, stroke or death from heart disease for years afterward, a new study finds. This elevated risk was highest in the first month after pneumonia – fourfold – but remained 1.5 times higher over subsequent years, the researchers say. "A single episode of pneumonia could have long-term consequences several months or years later," said lead researcher Dr. Sachin Yende, an associate professor of critical care medicine and clinical and translational sciences at the University of Pittsburgh. This year's flu season is particularly hard on older adults, and pneumonia is a serious complication of flu, he said. Getting a flu shot and the pneumonia vaccine "may not only prevent these infections, but may also prevent subsequent heart disease and stroke," Yende said. Pneumonia, which ... Read more

Related support groups: Heart Disease, Pneumonia

Preterm Birth, Pneumonia Leading Causes of Death for Children Under 5

Posted 1 Oct 2014 by

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 1, 2014 – Nearly 2 million children younger than 5 died worldwide in 2013 of complications from premature birth and pneumonia, a new study shows. In all, 6.3 million children under 5 died in 2013, said researchers who examined the leading causes of death. They were complications from premature birth, resulting in 965,000 deaths; pneumonia, which caused 935,000 deaths, and childbirth complications, which led to 662,000 deaths. Nearly 52 percent of children died from infectious diseases such as pneumonia, malaria and diarrhea, according to the study published Sept. 30 in The Lancet. "Although great progress has been made in child survival in the past two decades, with most of this progress in the past decade, it has not been enough," the study authors, led by Dr. Robert Black, of Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, said in a journal news release. The highest ... Read more

Related support groups: Pneumonia, Prematurity/Underweight in Infancy

Scientists Spot How Bacterial Pneumonia Damages the Heart

Posted 19 Sep 2014 by

FRIDAY, Sept. 19, 2014 – Doctors have known that bacterial pneumonia can raise your risk of heart problems, but new research pinpoints why. The bacteria actually invade and kill heart cells, increasing the chances of heart failure, abnormal heart rhythms and heart attacks in patients, scientists report. In mice, monkeys and human heart tissue, researchers found direct evidence of heart damage caused by the bacteria, and they tried a vaccine that might one day prevent such an attack. But they also discovered that an antibiotic currently used to treat pneumonia may actually make it easier for the bacteria to damage the heart. "When people are hospitalized for pneumonia, about 20 percent of them have something happen to their hearts, and those people are much more likely to die," explained lead researcher Carlos Orihuela, an associate professor in the department of microbiology and ... Read more

Related support groups: Pneumonia

Study Finds Drop in Kids' Hospital-Related Infections

Posted 8 Sep 2014 by

MONDAY, Sept. 8, 2014 – Fewer children are developing infections related to their care in the hospital than they were seven years ago, according to a new study. The rate of bloodstream infections and pneumonia associated with critically ill children's health care in intensive care units fell by more than 50 percent between 2007 and 2012, researchers found. "We're recognizing that there are things that happen at hospitals that are preventable and there are things we can do to make being in the hospital safer, including for our most vulnerable patients," said lead researcher Dr. Stephen Patrick, assistant professor of pediatrics and health policy at Vanderbilt University in Nashville. "These are preventable complications that can be deadly or have life-long consequences, and I think this is a nice success story of providers getting together and saying the status quo is not acceptable," ... Read more

Related support groups: Pneumonia, Sepsis

Common Respiratory Diseases Tied to Lung Cancer Risk

Posted 15 Aug 2014 by

FRIDAY, Aug. 15, 2014 – Three common respiratory diseases seem to be associated with an increased risk of lung cancer, researchers report. The investigators analyzed data from seven studies that included more than 25,000 people and found that chronic bronchitis, emphysema and pneumonia were linked with a greater risk of developing lung cancer. Having asthma or tuberculosis was not associated with a higher lung cancer risk, according to the study published in the Aug. 15 issue of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine. People who had all three – chronic bronchitis, emphysema and pneumonia – had a higher risk of lung cancer than those with chronic bronchitis only. There was no increased risk of lung cancer among those who had chronic bronchitis along with asthma or tuberculosis, the study found. In a journal news release, study author Ann Olsson said the reason ... Read more

Related support groups: Bronchitis, Pneumonia, Lung Cancer

Antibiotic Lowers Death Risk for Elderly Patients With Pneumonia: Study

Posted 3 Jun 2014 by

TUESDAY, June 3, 2014 – The antibiotic Zithromax (azithromycin) significantly lowers older pneumonia patients' risk of death but slightly increases their risk of heart attack, a new study indicates. Researchers analyzed data from more than 65,000 patients aged 65 and older who were treated for pneumonia at Veterans Administration hospitals between 2002 and 2012. About half of them received azithromycin and half did not. Ninety days after hospital admission, death rates were just over 17 percent for patients in the azithromycin group and about 22 percent in the other group. The patients who received azithromycin had a slightly higher risk of heart attack (5.1 percent versus 4.4 percent), but nearly the same risk for any cardiac event (about 43 percent), heart rhythm disorders (about 26 percent) and heart failure (26 percent), the investigators found. For every 21 patients treated with ... Read more

Related support groups: Azithromycin, Pneumonia, Zithromax, Zithromax Z-Pak, Z-Pak, Azithromycin Dose Pack, Zithromax TRI-PAK, Zithromax IV, Zmax

Infant Vaccines Also Protect Seniors Against Pneumonia: Study

Posted 11 Jul 2013 by

THURSDAY, July 11 – Vaccines given to infants to prevent blood and ear infections also seem to protect older people from pneumonia, a new study indicates. Researchers from Vanderbilt University found childhood vaccinations against pneumococcal bacteria have reduced pneumonia hospitalizations by 10 percent, particularly among older adults. They noted that this so-called "herd immunity" is more effective than the vaccine that is recommended for adults to prevent the spread of pneumonia. "Pneumonia is a leading cause of hospitalization in the United States. The protective effect we saw in older adults, who do not receive the vaccine but benefit from vaccination of infants, is quite remarkable. It is one of the most dramatic examples of indirect protection or herd immunity we have seen in recent years," study author Dr. Marie Griffin, a professor of preventive medicine and medicine at ... Read more

Related support groups: Pneumonia, Vaccination and Prophlaxis

Vibativ Approved for Certain Bacterial Pneumonia

Posted 24 Jun 2013 by

MONDAY, June 24 – The antibiotic Vibativ (telavancin) has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat pneumonia caused by Staphylococcus aureus bacteria when other treatments aren't suitable. Pneumonia, a lung infection, can be caused by different bacteria and viruses. S. aureus infection often affects people in hospitals, notably those on ventilators. Such infections can be serious, since people on a ventilator often have a weakened immune system and are unable to fight an infection, the FDA said in a news release. Vibativ's safety and effectiveness were evaluated clinically among 1,532 people. The studies found the drug was about as effective in treating S. aureus pneumonia as another approved antibiotic, vancomycin. However, the studies found that more people treated with Vibativ died if they also had kidney problems, compared to kidney patients who took ... Read more

Related support groups: Pneumonia, Vibativ, Telavancin

FDA Approves Vibativ for Hospitalized Patients with Bacterial Pneumonia

Posted 23 Jun 2013 by

June 21, 2013 – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today expanded the approved use of the antibiotic Vibativ (telavancin) to treat patients with hospital-acquired and ventilator-associated bacterial pneumonia (HABP/VABP) caused by Staphylococcus aureus. Vibativ should be used for the treatment of HABP/VABP only when alternative treatments are not suitable. Bacterial pneumonia is a lung infection that can be caused by many different types of bacteria. Vibativ is approved only to treat S. aureus, not other bacteria that cause pneumonia. HABP/VABP, also known as nosocomial pneumonia, is a particularly serious lung infection because patients in the hospital and especially those on ventilators are often already very sick and usually cannot fight the infection. “Today’s approval demonstrates the FDA’s commitment to making available new therapeutic options to treat serious diseases like ... Read more

Related support groups: Pneumonia, Vibativ, Telavancin

Pneumonia May Lead to Serious Aftereffects for Seniors

Posted 23 Mar 2013 by

FRIDAY, March 22 – Seniors who are hospitalized for pneumonia are at high risk for long-term physical and mental problems that can impair their ability to care for themselves, according to a new study. The study looked at data on about 1,400 adults older than 50 who survived more than 1,700 hospitalizations for pneumonia, heart attack or stroke. The effects of pneumonia were comparable to those seen in people who survive a heart attack or stroke, the researchers said. Patients who required hospital care for pneumonia – including those hospitalized just once during a nine-year period and those who did not require critical care – had a more than two-fold increased risk of a decline in mental abilities. The effects could be so severe that they led to disability and admission to a nursing home. The study also found that patients hospitalized for pneumonia had a nearly two times increased ... Read more

Related support groups: Pneumonia

Scientists Shed Light on Fungus Behind Deadly Pneumonia Strain

Posted 28 Dec 2012 by

FRIDAY, Dec. 28 – Researchers report that they've sequenced the genome of a fungus called Pneumocystis jirovecii, potentially laying the groundwork for new ways to treat a strain of pneumonia that can kill people with weakened immune systems. The strain is known as Pneumocystis pneumonia. First noticed among malnourished babies, it gained attention during the AIDS epidemic because it struck HIV-infected patients. It also strikes other patients whose immune systems don't work properly, such as those who receive organ transplants, are undergoing treatment for blood cancer or have autoimmune disorders. The sequencing of the genome revealed that the fungus is a parasite that must live within the human body to survive. "This has been quite an important finding which implied that human beings represent the reservoir of this pathogen," study co-author Philippe Hauser of the Centre Hospitalier ... Read more

Related support groups: Pneumonia, Pneumocystis Pneumonia

Sedatives May Raise Pneumonia Risk

Posted 5 Dec 2012 by

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 5 – People taking the widely prescribed sedatives known as benzodiazepines may be putting themselves at greater risk for developing pneumonia, British researchers report. Moreover, they may also face an increased risk of dying from the disease, the investigators added. Benzodiazepines such as Halcyon, Librium, Valium and Xanax are commonly prescribed for anxiety, epilepsy, muscle spasm and insomnia. "Our study calls into question the safety of benzodiazepine drugs in the context of infection," said study author Dr. Robert Sanders, a senior clinical research associate at the Wellcome Department of Imaging Neuroscience at the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience at University College London. "While further study is required, this initial analysis suggests that benzodiazepine exposure may increase the risk of developing pneumonia or dying from pneumonia," he said. Sanders ... Read more

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