Pneumonia in a child usually occurs due to a weakened or not fully strengthened immune system. This course of a pathological condition is called latent or quiet. It is difficult to recognize the disease: the baby is so small that he cannot explain what exactly bothers him or does not know how to speak at all.
Pathology is not transmitted from person to person. It is impossible to get infected with it by contact-household or airborne droplets. However, it is viral, infectious.
Causes of pneumonia without fever
Pneumonia in children is caused by:
- viruses: are provocateurs in 50% of cases;
- fungus: the type of lesion is characteristic with a strong weakening of the body’s defenses, when the disease is difficult;
Factors provoking pneumonia in childhood:
- overheating, hypothermia;
- frequent overwork;
- anemia, rickets, physical underdevelopment, hypotrophy;
- congenital or acquired immunodeficiency;
- inflammatory processes of a chronic nature in the nasal , oropharynx;
- bronchitis with regular relapses;
- a long course of treatment of the child with antitussive medications;
- lack of nutrients during feeding;
- inhalation of chemical vapors;
- prolonged bed rest;
- contact with patients with pyoinflammatory diseases;
- vertical transmission of infection (from mother to child);
- the presence of bad habits in a woman during lactation;
- uncontrolled use of antibacterial drugs by a nursing mother.
All of the above increases the likelihood of pneumonia without fever.
How to identify a disease
Pneumonia without hyperthermia is usually observed in children of the first year of life – infants. However, the pathological condition of the infant can be determined by other symptoms. They are divided into respiratory and those that are not associated with lung damage.
From the respiratory signs of pneumonia in a child without fever, there are:
- The inhalation rate increases. In this case, the depth of the latter decreases. Breathing becomes intense and shallow.
- Inflation of the wings of the nose.
- Dry cough, snot.
- Symptoms of muscle wasting of the respiratory system: the child is trying to connect additional muscles to the process. For example, the patient may try to rest his hands on something hard.
- Severe wheezing.
- Cyanosis: The skin becomes cyanotic. This is due to the lack of oxygen in the blood, its saturation with carbon dioxide. The lungs stop working normally, and therefore a pathological condition arises.
Respiratory symptoms appear later. In a few weeks or even months.
In most patients, the clinical picture that does not relate to the respiratory system comes to the fore:
- Behavior change: Children become whiny, irritable, and often naughty. There may be severe anxiety, restlessness, which are unusual for the character of the child. The patient’s sleep quality deteriorates.
- Lethargy, drowsiness: with a pathological condition, the child’s body weakens. The kid often gets tired, all the time trying to lie down or sit down.
- General malaise: This symptom is typical for patients who have already begun to talk. They complain of aches, pains, discomfort in the body.
If any of the listed manifestations (respiratory or others) occur, you must immediately show the child to a doctor before the disease becomes severe.
The lack of temperature with pneumonia makes it difficult to make a reliable diagnosis. The specialist uses diagnostic methods to determine the main symptoms of pneumonia:
- wiretapping of breathing with a phonendoscope: wheezing, whistling are heard during inflammation;
- tapping areas with possible damage: with pneumonia, the sound is dull due to accumulated exudate;
- X-ray or magnetic resonance imaging: inflamed areas are visible on the computer monitor, the size of the lesion is determined.
The listed research methods do not always help to detect pneumonia. In severe cases, bronchoscopy is prescribed.
Which doctor should you take your child to?
If you suspect pneumonia, you should immediately show the child to the doctor. You can make an appointment with your local pediatrician. He will conduct a preliminary diagnosis, if necessary, refer you to other specialists. A pulmonologist is involved in the treatment of pneumonia.
If pneumonia is suspected, laboratory tests of urine and blood are prescribed. The first study for pneumonia will show the presence of protein in urine and a high density. In the blood test, there will be an increase in ESR and an increase in the concentration of leukocytes. Additionally, the doctor may prescribe a bacterial sputum culture.
Treatment of childhood pneumonia without fever
For the treatment of pneumonia, complex therapy is used. The following scheme is usually used:
- Drinking regimen: accelerates the release of toxins, phlegm. It is recommended to give the child warm tea, compote, rosehip decoction, still mineral water. Babies up to one year old – breast milk.
- Bed rest in the early days to avoid complications.
- Diet: a child with pneumonia often refuses food. You cannot force feed him. Older children are advised to give chicken soup with mashed chicken breast. For newborns, mother’s milk.
Every day, in the room where the patient is located, it is necessary to carry out wet cleaning, ventilate the room.
Features of drug treatment
Drug therapy involves taking the following drugs:
- Antibacterial: penicillin group with clavulanic acid, macrolides, cephalosporins. Medicines are prescribed in various forms depending on the age of the child and the severity of the pathological condition: suspensions, tablets, injections. The course of treatment is from 7 to 14 days.
- Antitussives: bronchodilators and expectorant syrups, solutions for inhalation. Medication helps the phlegm to go out quickly.
- Antipyretic medicines: prescribed for hyperthermia more than 38 degrees (in some cases, the temperature rises over time). Usually, drugs containing paracetamol or ibuprofen are prescribed. Medicines can be alternated, but the time between doses should not be less than 4 hours. If a child is diagnosed with epilepsy or other pathologies of the central nervous system, drugs are prescribed at a temperature of 37.5 degrees.
- Immunostimulants: Needed to strengthen the defenses. Usually, drugs based on interferon are used in the form of rectal suspensions.
Antibacterial drugs have an undesirable feature: they violate the intestinal microflora. Therefore, the intake of probiotics is additionally recommended. Any use of medications should take place under the supervision of a doctor. Uncontrolled use of drugs can be harmful.
In addition to the main methods of treatment, traditional medicine is used. They help to strengthen the immune system and alleviate the symptoms of a pathological condition. With pneumonia, you can use decoctions and infusions of medicinal herbs, juices, honey. Any method is agreed with the doctor so as not to aggravate the child’s condition.
Decoction of medicinal herbs
If the disease was not detected at the initial stages of development, the prognosis is poor. At best, pneumonia will become chronic. Complications are possible, the pathological condition affects other organs that are not even associated with the lungs. If inflammation is not detected and treatment is not started, everything can be fatal.
Pneumonia is a serious and fatal disease. Preventive measures must be followed to reduce the risk of pathology. They are primary:
- hardening procedures;
- balanced diet;
- an active lifestyle;
- compliance with the regime.
Secondary prevention includes the following measures:
- chest massage;
- regular intake of vitamins B and C;
- lavage and treatment of the nasopharynx.
Secondary prophylaxis is needed to reduce the risk of relapse.
Inflammation of the lungs can provoke adverse effects:
- cardiopulmonary failure;
- total progressive destruction of lung tissue;
- abscess and gangrene of the lung;
- empyema of the pleura.
These are serious diseases that lead to irreversible consequences. Therefore, it is important to identify pneumonia in a child at the initial stages and begin adequate treatment. Pneumonia cannot be quickly and easily eliminated, but the earlier therapy is prescribed, the lower the likelihood of complications.