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Necrotizing Pneumonia – Causes of Necrotizing Pneumonia, Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment, Prevention

Necrotizing pneumonia is an inflammation of the lungs and airways to lungs, that is bronchial tubes from breathing in the foreign substances. This is also known as aspiration pneumonia, aspiration of vomitus, anaerobic pneumonia and aspiration pneumonitis. Necrotizing pneumonia usually affects people who are intoxicated, debilitated by alcohol and drugs, unconscious from medical condition or anesthesia and elderly people. This can also develop in a healthy person who inhales large amount of foreign substances.

Causes of Necrotizing Pneumonia:

This is caused by breathing in foreign materials , generally liquids, food, fluids from mouth or vomit) into lungs. This results in:

  • Pus formation in lungs
  • Lung infection
  • Inflammatory reaction

Inhalation of foreign particles into lungs may cause:

  • Sedatives
  • Old age
  • Medicines which affect alertness
  • Excessive usage of alcohol
  • Esophagus disorders
  • Disorders which affect swallowing
  • Dental problems
  • Absent or decreased gag reflex in unconscious people
  • Coma
  • Anesthesia

Acidic substances which is aspired into lungs may cause severe injury to lungs. However, this may not lead to pneumonia.

Symptoms of Necrotizing Pneumonia:

Necrotizing pneumonia symptoms include:

  • Difficulty in swallowing
  • Excessive sweating
  • Breath odor
  • Wheezing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Cough
    • With greenish phlegm or sputum
    • Sputum contains blood or pus
    • Foul smelling sputum or phlegm
  • Chest pain
  • Bluish discoloration of skin due to lack of oxygen

Diagnosis of Necrotizing Pneumonia:

Physical exam may reveal the crackling sounds in lungs and high heart beat rate or rapid pulse. Following tests helps to diagnose the condition:

  • Swallowing studies
  • Sputum culture
  • Computed Tomography scan of chest
  • Complete blood count
  • Chest X-ray
  • Bronchoscopy
  • Blood culture
  • Arterial blood gas

Treatments for Necrotizing Pneumonia:

Some people may require hospitalization. Treatment is based upon the severity of the condition. Antibiotics that treat bacteria may be prescribed by the health care provider. Some are given special antibiotics for treating bacteria hat live in mouth.

  • Type of bacteria which caused the necrotizing pneumonia depends on:
  • Recent usage of antibiotics
  • Whether the person has been hospitalized recently
  • Residing location
  • Health of the patient

Patient may undergo swallowing function test. People having difficulty in swallowing may need to follow other feeding techniques to minimize the aspiration risk.

Complications of Necrotizing Pneumonia

Complications include:

  • Infection may spread to other body parts
  • Infection may spread into blood stream
  • Shock
  • Pneumonia with lung abscess
  • Low blood pressure
  • Acute respiratory distress syndrome

Prevention of Necrotizing Pneumonia:

  • Be aware of the aspiration risk
  • Avoid behaviors which leads to aspiration, like excessive alcohol use

1 response to Necrotizing Pneumonia – Causes of Necrotizing Pneumonia, Symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment, Prevention

  1. My fraternal twin sister just died of this illness November 11th. I appreciate reading about this illness to understand it better-I had never heard of necrotic pneumonia. It was listed as the cause of death on my sister’s death certificate as “Necrotizing pneumonia.” She was only 52 .
    Anyway, thanks for putting this info out there. Helping me understand her illness helps on my road to recovering from my loss.

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