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Bacterial Pneumonia (cont.)

Bacterial Pneumonia Follow-up

Depending on the severity of pneumonia, the patient may need a follow-up visit. This is especially important because many bacteria have developed the ability to resist certain antibiotics. The doctor may need to adjust the dose of the patient's medication or change to another antibiotic.

  • A repeat chest X-ray in the weeks after symptoms have resolved may be ordered to confirm the infection has resolved, and to assure that the chest X-ray is clear of any abnormalities. Some pneumonias can occur when an airway is blocked by a growth or foreign body that has aspirated into the lung. The X-ray may not appear free of pneumonia if one of these events has occurred.
  • Good communication with the doctor is the most important step in follow-up care. The doctor should tell the patient how long to expect the fever to last and when the cough should begin to resolve. The patient should tell the doctor he or she is not improving as told.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 2/22/2013

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