February 17, 2010

Aspiration Pneumonia Symptoms and Treatment

Posted in Category : Common Ailments


Aspiration pneumonia is an infection of the lungs that is caused due to breathing in germs through the nose and mouth along with air that bears dust particles, noxious gases and microorganisms. Aspiration pneumonia mostly occurs when the toxins present in the digestive tract move up into the respiratory tract while vomiting. Excessive consumption of alcohol may lead to this problem. Once the germs invade the lungs, the alveolar sacs responsible for absorbing oxygen from inhaled air become filled with fluid and stop functioning smoothly, leading to symptoms like coughing and wheezing. Other initial symptoms of this condition are a cold in the head or the throat that causes mild irritation and headache, which gradually leads to symptoms like sharp pain in the chest, high fever and chills and shallow breathing. The patient may sweat profusely and even suffer from convulsions and delirium. When both the lungs are infected, the condition of the patient can become dangerous. Though the immediate cause responsible for aspiration pneumonia is a bacterial or viral infection, the underlying reasons are mostly nutritional deficiencies and imbalances and a faulty lifestyle. The most common ways of diagnosing this condition is to do a pathological test of the sputum or blood, as well as MRIs and X-rays. In the case of aspiration pneumonia, bronchoscopic suction is also employed to collect a sample of the phlegm for testing.


There are a few basic measures that you should follow in order to prevent this ailment. You should avoid alcohol and caffeinated beverages as these tend to dehydrate the body, making the mucus thick and suitable for the breeding of germs. You should also stop smoking and stay away from refined, spicy and sweetened snacks as they act as irritants and may cause inflammation of the lungs. A herbal tea made by boiling a teaspoon of fenugreek seeds in a cup of water for 5 minutes should also be consumed four times a day in order to naturally expel toxins and germs from the body, and thereby reduces the body temperature by inducing perspiration. A natural means of relieving the chest pain is to massage the area around the rib cage with a little turpentine oil and covering up the area with a soft towel before going to bed. A diet consisting only of fruit juices may also be adopted during the first couple of days of the infection in order to cleanse the body of germs and toxins and thereby prevent the condition from worsening.