Pneumonia is a type of lung infection that causes swelling in the airways of the lungs. Mucus and fluid may also build up inside the airways. Because a baby’s lungs are tiny, this may cause coughing and difficulty breathing. Babies with pneumonia may need to be treated in the hospital.
What are the causes?
This condition may be caused by:
Viruses. This is the most common cause of pneumonia.
Fungal infections. This is the least common cause of pneumonia.
What increases the risk?
Your baby is more likely to develop this condition if he or she:
Has other lung problems.
Has a weak disease-fighting (immune) system.
Is being treated for cancer.
Is in close contact with sick children, especially during the fall and winter seasons. …show more content…
How is this diagnosed?
This condition may be diagnosed by:
A physical exam.
Measuring the oxygen in your baby's blood.
A chest X-ray.
An imaging study of the lungs using sound waves (ultrasound).
Blood tests to check for signs of infection.
Taking samples of mucus or blood to check under a microscope (cultures).
How is this treated?
Treatment for this condition depends on the kind of pneumonia your baby has and the severity of the condition.
Viral pneumonia usually goes away with no specific treatment.
Bacterial pneumonia is treated with an antibiotic medicine. This medicine may be given through an IV.
If your baby is having trouble breathing, treatment will take place in the hospital. This is the same for viral or bacterial pneumonia. Treatment in the hospital may include:
IV fluids for hydration and nutrition.
Medicine to reduce fever.
Oxygen treatments. This may include placing a tube down your baby's throat to aid breathing with a machine.
Follow these instructions at home:
Give your baby over-the-counter and prescription medicines only as told by his or her health care provider.
Do not give your baby cough or cold medicines unless directed to do so by his or her health care provider. Cough medicine can prevent your baby's natural ability to remove mucus from the