About Recurrent Pneumonia in Adults

When fever, sputum production and leucocytosis due to the infection of the respiratory tract come in episodes, the condition is referred to as recurrent pneumonia. Recurrent pneumonia in adults is evidenced by the disappearance of such symptoms in between the episodes, only to recur after about one month. Cases of recurrent infections in adults are a rare occurrence, with only a small portion of those found to have such infections indicating underlying problems with the immune system. Most of the recurrent infection cases in adults emanate from secondary infections of the immune system, anatomic lesion and to a smaller extent, primary immune system defects.

When evaluating recurrent pneumonia in adults, there are several considerations needed. It is important to note that secondary infections mostly due to other diseases and medications feature more than primary causes. One of the major causes of the proteins and white blood cells is offering microbial defense in the body. If the immune system is hampered in any way, the body becomes prone to secondary infections, such as recurrent pneumonia in adults. Notably, secondary immune-deficiencies are more prevalent than the primary ones. The most popular form of secondary immune-deficiency is acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) which develops from the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). This virus specifically targets the defense against microbes making the victim vulnerable to several severe infections. At this stage the condition is referred to as AIDS.

Recurrent pneumonia in adults can also emanate from other forms of secondary immunodeficiency causes which include chronic conditions such as cancer, diabetes and spleen removal, and immunosuppressive treatment such as radiotherapy.

Concerning primary immune system anomalies, the vulnerability to infections and systematic disorders is increased by the defects. While there are many effects of such defects in the body, the most profound result is the reduction of antibodies, the body’s major defense against bacterial, viral and other forms of infections. Mostly, primary immunodeficiency cases are found in childhood but they could also occur in adulthood and cause conditions such as recurrent pneumonia in adults.  This plus other infections mainly target the blood system, gastrointestinal tract, the upper respiratory tract and other organs of the body. The infections will vary in severity depending on the promptness of diagnosis and treatment of the defect. Diagnosis for the anomaly may not be difficult, as it requires patient’s medical history and some tests on the immune system. Genetic testing may also be performed if the genetic problem is known. The prevalence of primary immunodeficiency has been proven by recent research findings to be more than previous estimates but its occurrence in adults is still on the lower side.

Immune deficiency whether primary or secondary has the direct effect enhancing the chances of recurrent pneumonia in adults to add to other inclinations such as flu, colds and related infections. It is worthwhile to note that the immune system is also affected by an infection attack and will also take some time to heal once the health scare has gone. It is during such a recovery period that the chances of getting recurrent pneumonia in adults are highest. The only difference is that the attack on the recovering immune system will have far much detrimental effect on the state of the body.

It is clear that the immune system’s state plays a monumental role in recurrent pneumonia in adults and as such it should be kept in the best form. To assist the proper functioning of this system, it is important to partake of a well balanced diet. Stress has a great effect on the function of the immune system and as such should be avoided at all times. Avoiding potentially hazardous instances and treating sleeping disturbances will also go a long way in enhancing the immune system, and in essence prevent recurrent pneumonia in adults.

More Articles