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Lower Respiratory Tract (Lung) Infections

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A wide range of illnesses affecting the lungs, including as pneumonia, bronchitis, and bronchiolitis, are referred to as lower respiratory tract infections, or LRTIs. Numerous pathogens, including bacteria, viruses, fungi, and occasionally even parasites, can cause these diseases. Globally, LRTIs are a major source of morbidity and mortality, especially in susceptible groups such small children, the elderly, and people with weakened immune systems. One of the most prevalent LRTIs is pneumonia, which is characterized by inflammation of one or both lungs' air sacs. Cough, fever, chest pain, and breathing difficulties are common symptoms. Antibiotics are typically used to treat bacterial pneumonia, although supportive care and antiviral drugs may be necessary for viral pneumonia.Another LRTI that affects the bronchial passages and results in inflammation and increased mucus production is called bronchitis. With rest and fluids, acute bronchitis usually goes away on its own. It is frequently viral in nature. Long-term inflammation is the hallmark of chronic bronchitis, a kind of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which can be made worse by smoking or exposure to irritants. The tiniest air channels in the lungs, the bronchioles, become inflamed and congested when an infant or young kid has bronchiolitis. Particularly in young children, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is the most frequent cause of bronchiolitis. Breathing difficulties, coughing, and wheezing are among the symptoms. The majority of the time, supportive care focuses on preserving fluids and making sure the patient gets enough oxygen.Opportunistic infections like Pneumocystis jirovecii pneumonia (PJP) can happen to immunocompromised people. PJP is a common infection in those with HIV/AIDS or those on immunosuppressive therapy, and it is caused by a fungus. Shortness of breath, coughing, and fever are common initial symptoms. Antimicrobial therapy is used in treatment; usually, antibiotics or antifungals are used. Vaccination against common pathogens such as pneumococcus and influenza, proper hand cleanliness, avoiding close contact with sick people, and quitting smoking are all effective ways to prevent lower respiratory tract infections (LRTIs). Effective management and prevention of consequences from these infections depend on early identification and proper treatment.To sum up, lower respiratory tract infections include a variety of lung ailments, such as pneumonia, bronchitis, and bronchiolitis. Numerous pathogens are responsible for them, and they can significantly increase morbidity and mortality, especially in groups that are already vulnerable. To combat these illnesses and lessen their influence on public health, it is crucial to be aware of the symptoms, implement preventative measures, and receive treatment as soon as possible.