Pneumonia is a medical condition that affects the lungs and can be caused by a variety of pathogens such as bacteria, viruses, fungi or other microbes. It can range from mild to severe and can be life-threatening, especially for older adults, infants, and people with weakened immune systems.
Pneumonia occurs when the air sacs in the lungs become inflamed and filled with fluid, making it difficult to breathe. Common symptoms of pneumonia include cough, fever, chest pain, shortness of breath, fatigue, and chills. These symptoms can develop gradually or suddenly, depending on the type of pneumonia and the health of the person affected.
There are several types of pneumonia, including community-acquired pneumonia (CAP), hospital-acquired pneumonia (HAP), and ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP). Treatment for pneumonia typically involves antibiotics for bacterial pneumonia, antivirals for viral pneumonia, and supportive care such as oxygen therapy and breathing treatments. Vaccines are also available to help prevent certain types of pneumonia, such as pneumococcal pneumonia.
Some common physiotherapy treatments for pneumonia may include:
Breathing exercises: These exercises aim to improve lung capacity and strength, and may include deep breathing, diaphragmatic breathing, and incentive spirometry.
Chest physiotherapy: This involves techniques such as postural drainage, percussion, and vibration to help loosen and clear mucus from the lungs.
Airway clearance techniques: These techniques involve using devices such as the Flutter valve, Acapella device, or chest vest to help loosen and clear mucus from the lungs.
Exercise therapy: Exercise may be used to help improve overall physical fitness, muscle strength, and endurance, and may include both aerobic and resistance training.