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TriStar Centennial Medical Center

Symptoms of Pneumonia

Pneumonia is a serious infection that should be treated promptly. Contact your doctor if you have pneumonia symptoms or if your child has pneumonia symptoms.

Effects of Pneumonia on the Lungs
Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

The symptoms of pneumonia include the following:

  • Fever or below-normal temperature
  • Chills
  • Sweating
  • Rapid breathing
  • Cough, may be dry or may produce sputum
  • Increased sputum
  • Chest or abdominal pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Pain through to the back
  • Pain with deep breathing
  • Rattle sound in the chest
  • Loss of energy, fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Headache
  • General muscle aches and pains
  • Lack of appetite

Severe symptoms that may occur in adults, especially the elderly, include:

  • Bluish color of the nails or lips due to diminished oxygen in the blood
  • Mental confusion (This is common in the elderly.)

Severe symptoms that may occur in babies and young children:

  • Flaring nostrils with each breath
  • Chest or ribs may suck in with each breath
  • Grunting sound with breathing

Revision Information

  • Beovic B, Bonac B, et al. Aetiology and clinical presentation of mild community-acquired bacterial pneumonia. Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis. 2003;22:584-591.

  • Pneumonia symptoms diagnosis and treatment. American Lung Association website. Available at: Accessed October 3, 2012.

  • Pneumonia in adults. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: Updated March 25, 2013. Accessed April 3, 2013.

  • Pneumonia in children. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: Updated March 18, 2013. Accessed April 3, 2013.

  • What are the signs and symptoms of pneumonia? National Heart Lung Blood Institute website. Available at: Updated March 1, 2011. Accessed April 3, 2013.

The health information in this Health Library is provided by a third party. TriStar Health does not in any way create the content of this information. It is provided solely for informational purposes. It does not constitute medical advice and is not intended to be a substitute for proper medical care provided by a physician. Always consult with your doctor for appropriate examinations, treatment, testing, and care recommendations. Do not rely on information on this site as a tool for self-diagnosis. If you have a medical emergency, call 911.