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Pneumonia In Children, Ambulatory Care

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:

Pneumonia

is an infection in one or both of your child's lungs. Fluid collects in the lungs, making it hard to breathe. Pneumonia is usually caused by a virus but can also be caused by bacteria, fungi, or parasites. Pneumonia can also occur if foreign material, such as food or stomach acid, is inhaled into the lungs.

Common symptoms include the following:

  • Cough, usually with yellow or green mucus
  • Fever
  • Crying more than usual, or more irritable or fussy than normal
  • Poor appetite
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Pale or blue lips, fingernails, or toenails

Seek immediate care for the following symptoms:

  • Fever in a child under 3 months old
  • Lips or nails are blue
  • Signs of trouble breathing:
    • More than 60 breaths in one minute for newborn babies up to 2 months old
    • More than 50 breaths in one minute for a baby 2 months to 12 months old
    • More than 40 breaths in one minute for a child older than 1 year
    • The skin between your child's ribs and around his neck pulls in with each breath
    • Wheezing
    • Nostrils open wider when he breathes in

Treatment for pneumonia

may include medicines to treat the germ causing the infection. Your child may need extra oxygen through a mask placed over his nose and mouth or through small tubes placed in his nostrils.

Prevent pneumonia:

  • Avoid the spread of germs. Wash your hands and your child's hands often with soap and water. Use gel hand cleanser when there is no soap and water available. Remind your child to cover his mouth when he coughs. Do not let him share food, drinks, or utensils with others. Keep your child away from others until he is better.
  • Do not let anyone smoke around your child. Smoke can make your child's cough or breathing worse.
  • Ask your child's healthcare provider about vaccines. Your child may need a flu or pneumonia vaccine.

Follow up with your child's healthcare provider as directed:

Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your child's visits.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your child's care. Learn about your child's health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your child's caregivers to decide what care you want for your child. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

© 2016 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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