Pneumonia is actually a term used to describe an inflammation of the lungs that causes the formation of fluid in lung tissue pile.
This condition can describe several diseases, such as pneumonia, because the air sacs in the lungs are filled with fluid or pus. This disease can have serious consequences if it is suffered by infants, young children, the elderly, and people who have weak immune systems.
Wet lung disease can be recognized from a variety of general symptoms, including:
- Dry cough or cough accompanied by yellow, brown, green, or reddish phlegm (coughing up blood).
- Chest pain that gets worse when coughing.
- Heavy breathing or shortness of breath, even when you are resting.
- Fever, chills, and often sweat.
- Loss of appetite.
- Fatigue or seem to have no energy.
- Nausea, vomiting or diarrhea.
- Heart pounding.
In addition to general symptoms, there are also additional symptoms of wet lung that appear according to the sufferer ages, namely:
- In babies, the symptoms of cough may not be very obvious. Symptoms that may arise usually is the baby becomes fussy and difficult to eat or drink.
- In children under 5 years age, breathing can be rapid and sound (wheezing).
- In adults, additional symptoms can be confused, sleepy, even comatose.
Causes of Wet Lungs
There are many things that can infect the lungs to cause a wet lung, namely:
1. Bacterial infection
The most common bacterial cause of wet lung is Streptococcus pneumoniae. In addition, there are also bacteria Legionella pneumophila, Mycoplasma pneumoniae, Staphylococcus aureus, and Haemophilus influenzae. Wet lungs can be caused by transmission of germs from other people or due to long-term use of a ventilator.
2. Viral infection
Viral infections that cause flu, bronchitis and bronchiolitis are common causes of wet lungs in toddlers. This type of wet lung is usually lighter and can heal itself within 1-3 weeks without treatment. However, there are also things that can become more severe.
3. Fungal infections
Wet lungs due to fungal infections are more common in people who have chronic health problems or a weak immune system. Infection can also occur after fungi from the soil or bird droppings are inhaled. Examples of fungi that can cause wet lungs are Pneumocystis jirovecii, Cryptococcus, and Histoplasmosis.
In addition to infections, wet lungs can also occur due to other things, such as aspiration pneumonia that occurs due to the entry of foreign objects, such as gastric fluid, saliva, food, or drinks, into the airways and cause disturbances in the lungs. In certain cases, wet lungs can also arise due to pleural effusion.
How to prevent wet lungs?
Prevention of wet lungs can be done by applying a healthy lifestyle, namely:
- Get pneumonia vaccination (PCV vaccine) and influenza.
- Do not smoke and reduce the consumption of alcoholic drinks.
- Diligent hand washing, in order to avoid transmission of germs from other people or from objects that are contaminated with germs.
- Maintain environmental cleanliness, for example by disposing of trash in its place and cleaning the house regularly.
- Cover mouth and nose with a handkerchief when sneezing.
- Use a mask when there is air pollution or people who are sick of cough or runny nose around the home or office.
Wet lung is a health problem that needs to be examined and treated by a lung specialist. If left untreated, this condition has the potential to become more severe and damage to the lungs.
Treatment of wet lung is adjusted according to severity and cause. For example if a wet lung is caused by a bacterial infection, the doctor will give antibiotics. For wet lungs that are so heavy as to cause respiratory failure, treatment requires breathing aids and intensive care at the ICU.