Viral pneumonia in children

Pneumonia is an ailment accompanied by inflammation of functional tissue. It can be primary or secondary. In the latter case, viral pneumonia occurs due to an ineffective therapeutic regimen for colds. Pathogenic viruses are transmitted by airborne droplets and contact-household methods. The likelihood of focal outbreaks directly depends on the individual characteristics of the patient, living conditions, addictions, and the season. The state of the immune system is of great importance.

Pneumonia is focal, total, segmental, confluent and lobar. Inflammation of the lungs that develops in a child is viral in 90% of cases. By the nature of the course, the disease is acute, subacute and chronic. The exact cause of the malaise is identified in the course of differential diagnosis. It is carried out in a hospital.

Pneumonia is very dangerous for a baby. The disease affects the respiratory system. Partial lung dysfunction occurs due to:

  • oxygen deficiency;
  • failures in the process of gas exchange;
  • water-salt imbalance;
  • accumulations of harmful compounds.


Viral pneumonia can be triggered by the following pathogens:

  • influenza and parainfluenza virus;
  • rhinoviruses;
  • respiratory syncytial virus;
  • adenoviruses;
  • cytomegalovirus;
  • herpes virus;
  • metapneumoviruses;
  • viruses that cause chickenpox and measles.

Predisposing factors include:

  • the patient’s age (less than 5 years old);
  • decreased immune defense;
  • unbalanced diet;
  • pathology of the cardiovascular system;
  • exposure to low temperatures.

There are three types of influenza virus. Pathogens of type A and B provoke the appearance of a primary epidemic disease. The third type of influenza virus causes unassociated ailments of the upper respiratory system. Rhinoviruses give impetus to the development of bronchiolitis and acute pneumonia. The likelihood of these diseases is increased in infants and newborns.

There are four types of parainfluenza virus. The third is widespread, with outbreaks occurring throughout the year. The first two subtypes are most often recorded in the autumn-winter period. This is due to seasonal weakening of the immune system. Adenoviruses give rise to the development of many diseases of the respiratory system. Fulminant pneumonia affects weak children and infants who have not yet developed a defense mechanism. The same applies to premature babies, patients who have suffered from the following disorders:

  • injuries sustained during childbirth;
  • hypoxia;
  • congenital anomalies of the cardiovascular and respiratory systems.


The main clinical manifestations of pneumonia include shortness of breath, cough, general weakness, cyanosis of the skin. After entering the body, the virus settles in the upper respiratory system. Subsequently, the disease captures the lower segments of the affected lung.

Pneumonia is preceded by damage to the epithelium that forms the bronchioles. In the secret that is secreted by the bronchi, pathogenic viruses are found. With the activation of the cough syndrome, they enter healthy cells, as a result of which the affected area increases significantly. The disease begins to progress immediately after the entry of the pathogen into the respiratory tract.

Viral pneumonia is detected by the following symptoms:

  • Symptoms of the disease that provoked pneumonia decrease in intensity after 3-4 days. If foci of inflammation appear in the lower segments of the lung, the patient’s well-being is greatly impaired.
  • The cough is of a different nature. It can be dry or wet. In the latter case, the result of a cough attack is the separation of yellow-green sputum.
  • The clinical picture in viral pneumonia is complemented by high body temperature, chills, headache and excessive sweating. It should be noted that medications that eliminate hyperthermia do not bring a positive effect.
  • The baby’s breathing quickens. This is due to a lack of oxygen and a narrowing of the airway lumen.
  • Dyspnea occurs due to hypersecretion and swelling of the mucous membranes. With the appearance of this symptom, the process of removing sputum accumulated in the bronchi significantly deteriorates.

Due to tissue hypoxia, cyanosis of a diffuse nature develops. The patient complains of painful sensations in the sternum. To avoid discomfort, the child tries to take the most comfortable position.

The prognosis directly depends on the disease that caused the pneumonia. Patients are most likely to tolerate pneumonia, which is triggered by an adenovirus infection.

There are several types of influenza pneumonia, including primary, secondary and combined. Primary pneumonia is considered the most dangerous. This is due to severe pulmonary complications. Symptoms of viral pneumonia may also be present in the clinical picture, such as:

  • arrhythmia;
  • muscle pain;
  • catarrhal phenomena;
  • severe vomiting, nausea;
  • rashes on the skin;
  • loss of appetite;
  • chronic fatigue.


Pneumonia is a very dangerous disease. The sooner it is identified, the more chances for a complete restoration of the mucous membranes of the parenchymal organ. To determine the exact cause of the patient’s discomfort, they are sent for laboratory tests (OAC, OAM, sputum examination, immunofluorescence analysis). This is preceded by a history and physical examination. The list of mandatory procedures includes:

  • auscultation;
  • percussion;
  • x-ray;
  • bronchoscopy.

Thanks to radiography, the doctor determines the affected area and the type of virus. Through auscultation, he listens to the lower segments of the affected organ. The progression of pneumonia is evidenced by the appearance of noise and dull sound in the lungs.

Treatment methods

Pneumonia is eliminated with the help of a medical complex, which includes drug treatment, physiotherapy, folk methods. The child is prescribed bed rest. Children suffering from pneumonia should be monitored by a doctor. Compulsory hospitalization is indicated for minor patients with a history of complications.

The drug regimen includes drugs with antiviral and expectorant properties. Also, the child is prescribed immunomodulators, probiotics and vitamin and mineral complexes. Antibiotics are prescribed if viral pneumonia becomes mixed. In severe cases, detoxification therapy is performed. The treatment lasts 10-14 days. During the recovery period, parents should take measures to prevent relapse.

Warming up of the lungs, breathing exercises and inhalation are ranked among the most effective physiotherapeutic procedures.

The rules are simple:

  • It is required to create a favorable microclimate in the child’s room. For this, special humidifiers are used.
  • The kid must comply with the daily routine.
  • During the treatment and rehabilitation of the child, it is necessary to correct the diet and drinking regime. The amount of liquid should be increased.
  • You need to control your body temperature.

The selection of medicines and prescriptions for alternative medicine should be handled by a doctor. Self-medication is strictly prohibited.


To avoid viral pneumonia, you must:

  • Give your child vitamins regularly.
  • Dress your baby for the weather.
  • Prevent his contact with infected people.
  • To bring the treatment of colds to the end.
  • Strengthen the child’s immune system.

In recent years, the number of viral infections among adults and minors has increased dramatically. At risk are weakened kids, children who attend kindergarten and school. To prevent epidemics, quarantine is introduced. The incubation period lasts several days. If untreated, death is possible.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *