At first it is important to note that Pneumonia and Lung cancer are infections that can attack you simultaneously.It is thus a dangerous case if a patient has Pneumonia with Lung cancer. Therefore, it is important to know all the necessary information that should be at your disposal once you have this condition. It is a serious condition that requires serious attention once identified.
What is pneumonia?
Among the things you need to understand is really what type of infection you are having. Many people may be diagnosed with an infection but do not care to ask a doctor what really the infection is.Pneumonia is a lung infection that is not only disturbing but is very common.
Pneumonia can have a variety of causes. However, the most common ones can be out of fungus, bacteria or a virus. The infection can attack you in different ways. This means it can be just a mild condition that can be treated within a short time or can be a severe case. Once Pneumonia becomes severe it can pose a serious threat to the health of the victim. Can even be fatal.
What is lung cancer?
When we mention cancer we refer to a condition where you have abnormal growth of cells in your body tissues. Lung cancer refers to the abnormal growth of unwanted cells in the lungs. It can happen in one of the lungs or both. Once these cells grow they can develop into tumors which pose complications in the affected individual.
Relationship between pneumonia and lung Cancer
For any person diagnosed with lung cancer, it is equally important to be cautious of Pneumonia; an opportunistic infection that can follow a cancer diagnosis. Once you have lung cancer then the chances of developing Pneumonia increase drastically. The two infections are highly related since both of them affect the lungs.
However, if you understand the information you are required to know about the two conditions, will help ease your mind. Some of the things you should know include the symptoms that people having pneumonia with lung cancer can experience, causes of such infections, as well as treatment and prevention measures.
Symptoms of pneumonia and lung Cancer
Having been diagnosed with pneumonia before lung cancer or lung cancer before pneumonia actually does not matter a lot when it comes to the effects posed by these infections. Nevertheless, having lung cancer can easily lead to pneumonia. Once you have the two then your health is at stake, especially if you do not realize quickly and get the right treatment.
It can be difficult to distinguish between pneumonia and lung cancer symptoms, since most of the symptoms are similar. This makes it more difficult identifying pneumonia if you are already suffering from lung cancer. It is important to understand symptoms caused by both infections to be able to relieve and treat them both.
- Coughing - For a person suffering from pneumonia with lung cancer, you will have a cough due to pneumonia. On the other side, lung cancer will cause a more persistent cough
- Both infections will lead to feeling fatigued. This happens even when a person has had little physical exertion
- Loss of energy - It is a common symptom that is caused by both infections
- Lack of oxygen is another symptom posed by both pneumonia and lung cancer. A person having both infections will experience consecutive loss of breathe especially if you engage in any physical activity
- Loss of weight
- Lack of appetite
- Since both infections affect the chest, you will experience a sharp and disturbing pain in your chest especially when you laugh, cough or breathe deeply. This is a symptom that is more worsened by lung cancer due to the development of tumors.
- A change in the color of mucus. This is caused by the effects of the infection to the blood. The mucus can be green, yellow or rust-colored. In other cases a patient will have blood in the mucus
Other symptoms of pneumonia unrelated to lung Cancer
Apart from having the symptoms listed above which are directly related to lung cancer. You should expect other symptoms caused by pneumonia alone. They include:
Types of pneumonia
There are a number of pneumonia infections that a person suffering from lung cancer should watch out for. This is because people with lung cancer have a higher risk of getting pneumonia. Pneumonia can be caused by bacteria, fungus or a virus. This means you can have three different types of pneumonia. It is also possible to have all the types at the same time.
Hence you should identify the type of pneumonia you have and keep yourself safe from the other types.
Having pneumonia with lung cancer might sometimes sound so complex that people forget to look out for the risk factors associated with the condition. If you have this condition it is important to keep yourself away from all the risk factors of both pneumonia and lung cancer. All the risk factors for lung cancer can be shared with pneumonia, since lung cancer is one of the risk factors for pneumonia.
Other risk factors for pneumonia apart from lung cancer include the following:
- Cigarette smoking - Not only can smoking cause pneumonia but also lung cancer.
- Chronic lung infection - This is one of the major risk factors that is related to lung cancer and pneumonia. Having chronic lung infections such as cystic fibrosis and obstructive pulmonary can easily lead to pneumonia.
- Complicating illnesses - These may include kidney disease, heart disease, liver cirrhosis and diabetes
- Recent surgery
- Recent respiratory disease - These may include influenza, chest cold or laryngitis
Available treatment options for a person suffering from pneumonia with lung cancer
Most people with lung cancer panic once they are diagnosed with pneumonia. However, there is no need for such a reaction. Treating pneumonia in a person with lung cancer is the same as it is for that person without lung cancer. The major step towards the treatment is dealing with the causes.
Pneumonia can involve two treatment methods. One of them is staying in the hospital as you are given (IV) antibiotics, while the other involves a patient using oral antibiotics while still at home. To determine if you should stay in the hospital, the following factors are considered:
- Severity of symptoms
- General body health
- Other vital signs like blood pressure
The bottom line
Lung cancer is one of the most dangerous infections leading to many deaths every year. People with lung cancer mostly die from pneumonia. It is thus important to prevent pneumonia as much as possible if you have lung cancer. Pneumonia becomes more serious in people with lung cancer since their lungs are compromised.
Irrespective of the fact that pneumonia can be fatal for people with lung cancer, it is treatable. The infection can also be prevented. This means that someone with lung cancer need not suffer from pneumonia as well.
Once you suspect or experience any symptoms of lung cancer or pneumonia, visit a doctor as soon as possible. Consult a doctor for the best guidance and treatment. You will also receive tips on prevention measures for pneumonia.