What is Walking Pneumonia?

Question

Dear Dr. Greene, Thanks for this wonderful service!!! My daughter’s friend has been diagnosed with “walking pneumonia.” What is it? How serious is it? Is my daughter likely to get it?
Redwood City, California

Dr. Greene's Answer

The word pneumonia sounds alarm bells in many parents. It is understandably disturbing, because some pneumonias are quite serious, particularly in those whose immune system is vulnerable (newborns, the elderly, and people with AIDS). The good news is that the great majority of pneumonias in children and adolescents are easily treatable.

Pneumonia simply means inflammation in the lung. It can be caused by microorganisms, viruses, chemical irritants, or foreign bodies. The phrase “walking pneumonia” refers to a group of pneumonias that, even if untreated, would not usually need bed rest or hospitalization. They can, however, make someone feel miserable with a severe cough, fever, chills, headache, and abdominal pain and they can last a long time.

What is it?

When physicians diagnose someone with walking pneumonia, they are usually referring to an infection with an organism called Mycoplasma pneumoniae. (Apart from being a pain, mycoplasmas are kind of cool. They are the smallest self-replicating biologic systems known.) Mycoplasma is a major cause of respiratory infections in school-aged children and young adults. It is most common between the ages of 5 and 15, accounting for 70% of pneumonias in children aged 9 to 15.

Is Walking Pneumonia Contagious 

Mycoplasma can be contagious with close contact. It usually requires prolonged contact to catch the disease. Epidemics have been reported in situations such as summer camps and boarding schools. The disease spreads through breathing air coughed by someone who is infected. Since the cough is often worse at night, people sleeping in the same room are most vulnerable. If your daughter has been spending a lot of time with her friend, chances are high that she will get it.

She will probably begin to get ill 1 to 3 weeks after her friend, but the onset is often so gradual that she may not notice it at first. A decrease in her energy level may be the earliest sign, followed by cold symptoms . She may have a headache, runny nose, and sore throat, sometimes accompanied by a fever. Unlike a cold, however, she will gradually get worse over about 2 weeks, with an increasing moist cough (and perhaps hoarseness) as the disease settles into her chest. Without treatment she will likely remain sick for a month or more.

Are There After Effects?

Even after she is well, she may have a dry cough lasting for 6 more weeks. Mycoplasma attacks the ciliated cells of the respiratory tract – those with little hairs on the surface. As new cells grow in to replace the damaged ones, there is a ‘tickle’ in the chest, causing a sporadic deep, dry cough.

How is Walking Pneunomia Treated?

Thankfully, mycoplasma infections are easy to treat – with the right medicine. The most common antibiotics in children are no help at all! Mycoplasma is exceptionally sensitive, however, to erythromycin, clarithromycin (Biaxin), azithromycin (Zithromax or Z-pak), and tetracyclines (usually only used over age 8). Your daughter will usually start to feel better within about a week of taking any of these medicines.

Should she take other medicines to help relieve her symptoms? Perhaps. Many of the symptoms in walking pneumonia are part of her body’s attempt to heal. The invading organisms don’t reproduce as well when she has a fever. The runny nose is an attempt to expel the invaders. The tiredness is a plea from her body to get some rest.

The cough keeps the infection from settling too deeply in her lungs. I would not recommend cough medicine except when the cough is disturbing her sleep – it is when she sleeps that her body is most actively repairing itself. Do keep in mind is that over-the-counter cough and cold medications are no longer available for children under 2 years old, and their use is discouraged in children under 6 years old.

Medical Review on: January 13, 2015
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Dr. Greene is a practicing physician, author, national and international TEDx speaker, and global health advocate. He is a graduate of Princeton University and University of California San Francisco.
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I had neumonia five yrs ago and had have surgery scrape my lungs out ..surgeon told me if I got it again there be no surgery cuz my lungs were so damaged if they had go in again they fall apart…. Well I just found out I have it again it was real bad lungs hurt super bad was worried let it go to long I’m on antibiotic two days now lil better but having lots anxiety bout this cuz they said two days no better I have be seen again no ride get there and I need a machine for inhalation med they gave me no machine just med

Tracy,

Depending on where you live, there are services to help you get transportation to medical treatment. If you are comfortable sharing your location, perhaps some of our readers can find links to the services you need.

@MsGreene
Note: I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, but I am not Dr. Greene and I am not a doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

good day Dr.
my daughter was diagnosed of pneumonia at 10 months and was in oxygen for 3 days. after an intravenous injection treatment for 5 days, it subsided but she frequently coughs especially at night which even result in too fast breathing and we have used different types of antibiotics including Azithromysin. i am currently scared cause of the volume of antibiotics in her system. we were discharged from hospital 7 days ago cause of same case. ans as i write the cough intensified yesterday.
is this pneumonia going to leave her any health effect after a long period? ppl assert it could lead to asthma, is this true?
we have been currently advised to use herbs to completely take care of her. how effective do you think herbs can be?
kindly respond via my e-mail.
Thanks in anticipation of your response.

Last Monday I was diagnosed of having pneumonia in my left lower love lung. I had no idea that I have this. I don’t have a cough or fever. I just had severe abdominal pain , night sweat and some headache. My left side of nose just felt clogged but it was like this since early this year. First I thought it was some stomach disease because it was really bad for almost a month but it turned out to be pneumonia when I had my x-ray. My doctor gave me Cefuroxime Axefil antibiotic. I am so stressed and don’t know what to do. I am not sure if I am improving or what. It’s just that my stomachache is gone but I still don’t have any cough.

I had a clogged nostril years ago, went to all kinds of doctors only to find out, I had a decayed tooth under my crown.

Hi Emily,

I hope this message finds you well. I found this old post while looking for answers concerning my sick son. He is going through the same exact thing that you have described. Can you please tell me what the ultimate diagnosis and treatment was given? This would be so helpful for me. Thank you. I hope you quickly recovered!

I was very interested re. Pneumonia but did not know about walking pneumonia . I am glad to have been informed by Dr. Greene . Although retired I work part time driving autistic children to the special schools . A lot of them really get sick during the winter season , sometimes staying home with pneumonia . Now knowing the symptoms of Walking Pneumonia will make me more alert not only for my own good but also for the the other kids in my bus . Thank you Dr. Greene . Heiko Ertel

I appreciated your comments – those of an older (possible suspect for pneumonia- SO am I, and I will have tests done to see if that (At my (usual, HAIL and HARDY) age just had a bout of 102-Plus temp, w/ productive and non-productive coughing) w/ dullness of spirit, and more.

Thank you for your kind reply and God bless you for your work.

I respectfully disagree with your most basic definition of pneumonia- it is, simply, infection of the lung. Pneumonitis denotes inflammation of the lung, caused by a myriad of offending agents or conditions, including pneumonia.

I keep getting pneumonia since 2010 ive had first pneumonia with a bacterial infection that almost killed me. I got pneumonia again in 2013 and now I have it again currently. I’m 37 and I’m becoming so afraid to be around people because of the risk to my health however, I have four children, one is under two and I can’t hide from them. I also need to work to help support my family and I just lost my new job of less then five months because I was ill most of the time since I started. I don’t know what to do and I’m afraid that I’m not going to have a normal life span anymore. I want to see my children grow up and meet my grand kids one day. Is there anything I can do? I have asmtha also which I’m sure knocks down my immune system and the Medes I take hardly help.

You might want to check for reflux or silent reflux disease, or just eating too late at night and the reflux is aspirating into your lungs while you sleep. You need your sleep too, taking care of your family.

Have had it for about 6 weeks. Mostly. Mental. Curiosity. Have had some issues. UP. Down. Nervous. Afraid. What. Should. I. Do

My daughter will be 9 in about 2 weeks and was just diagnosed with walking pneumonia. She was given azithromycin. I keep wondering if she should have been given an inhaler or a nebulizer since her coughing seems brutal since when she coughs I can hear congestion. When I had bronchitis I was given an inhaler and wondering if it would be safe to for my daughter. It is Proventil.

My three year old got a diagnosis of walking pneumonia and ear infection was given amoxicillin and totally agree with others that it’s a joke. 2 days after the 10 day cycle of Amox the fever and cough came back. Taking her back to her doctor tomorrow.

My Mom started telling my doctors that I am allergic to amox and penicillin because they NEVER work.

Hi, same case here with my son. He hasn’t been diagnosed with walking pneumonia but I suspect. First time he was prescribed amoxicillin. Didn’t work after the 10day dosage. He got the pneumonia again. I’ve got a different kind of a antibiotic now(can’t think of the name) I hope it works. Hes still coughing though. We go for a blood test soon as he’s done with this dose. Hope your baby is better now!

Did the doc give you different antibiotic, hope your little girl is ok:)

Hi, I have a mild pneumonia since early October 2016. My symptoms started as severe dizziness headache and stomachache. Then I began to sweat in bed at night. I thought I was having side effects to a new birth control I’d started but on ceasing this symptoms still persisted. Then I felt a mild pain numbness tightness n discomfort in chest n clicked it’s a lung infection. I am very prone to them lately. I smoke only socially n am very sensitive to them but will get an infection very easily from smoking. I used to just have one here n there n was ok but lately they are affecting me badly even burned my throat tissues most unusual although as I say very sensitive to them. I havnt smoked in 3 months. I continued to feel unwell with chills fatigue n sickness. I only had a mild cough but I knew this sickness was coming from lung as iv has so many in last 2 yrs. So went doc on call n got prescribed amoxicillin, however a very low dose. When I got home I noticed the dose was only 250mgs bds for 5 days. I felt this was very low n wondered if I should take as I knew I could come resistant if it wasn’t enough to kill it. Why on earth he prescribed such a low dose I don’t know. Here’s what I wanna say too. Chest infection severity cannot always be determined by a stetascope xrays etc sometimes you cannot hear the infection n that’s a fact, it doesn’t mean it’s not in there. Iv had lots of infections undetected through scope but clearly there when cough. Sometimes they produce mucus n sometimes they don’t. I’m sure there’s a reason for this but a lot of docs don’t recognize it. Anyway I stupidity took the flipping antibiotics instead of going back to my own doc probably for fear they’d think it not serious too n think I’m hypochondriac – stupid I know but iv bad experiences with docs. On day 3 of this low dose antibiotic I felt a massive improvement energy shot up chest cleared n headache lifted I even went for energetic walk. However I didn’t feel a 100% only about 70% n could still feel bit of bug in chest like a smaller tightness n numbness still there. So as you can guess the bacteria was not fully killed n allowed it to develop resistance. Iv since tried zinnst biaxin doxycycline n stronger amoxicillin n nothing is working. This resistant bug is now able to fend off everything. The chills n fever have ceased but iv still bad fatigue I just wanna sleep all the time, I can’t think straight and iv a mild headache there all the time. I still have chest tightness pain n numbness so the bug is still in there hense why I’m miserable. It’s really affecting my life with my relationship job n even mental health I feel like cracking up coz I just don’t feel right. I’m on my second cold this winter n can feel it even more when iv a cold. I’m still functioning but very tired. The problem is coz the xray is clear n my chest sounds clear my doc doesn’t even think I have infection when I do. My lung can’t expand properly in n out. It’s not severe tightness n pain but it’d definitely noticeable. I feel my left lung is not my own n I want it back n the bug out but I’m dealing with a resistant bug here n don’t know what to do or if am gonna be stuck with this forever coz it’s ‘mild’! I’m so glad other people are reporting mild chest symptoms n I’m not alone. As I said it’s mild but very noticeable all the same n I’m so fatigued. I’m taking yoghurts with streppoccus thermallis hoping that might eat it up but nothing yet!! Any advice much appreciated?? I went to a phychic recently I know you might laugh but iv had them pick things up in me before n she told me lots of stuff couldn’t have known n the first thing she said to me was something wrong with your lung unbelievable. I wanna feel well again I feel like I’m stuck in my body n there’s no resolution with a black cloud over me. I know that bug is still in there n the medical field don’t seem to be bothered. I will keep fighting my case but I’m so tired. Recently I went to private a n e n they referred me to respiratory specialist at least that’s something. Life would be very bleak if I was stuck with this. Everyone seems to know about resistance but no1 seems to be accepting this the case or what to do in this case of resistance! I have another underlying muscular N blood condition so iv enough to deal with that. Help gulp !!

Melissa: I am not medically trained but have had my own battles with pneumonia the past 18 months. I get treated with antibiotics and inhalers and I get better, but in time the pneumonia comes back. I suspect the cause for me is environmental, as I noticed water infiltrate into part of my heating/cooling ductwork in my slab floor. This happens when there is a lot of rain. I am in the process of repairing this problem, so that water cannot enter the duct, and then will wash down surfaces with a bleach solution. I think you should look for environmental causes — water entry/mold — and correct any such problem. Also, I recommend that you purchase a quality air cleaning machine — I bought one made by Winex (about $200) and run it beside my bed every night as I sleep. It won’t solve a water or mold problem, but it should improve the quality of air you are breathing, which could help. Good luck to you.

Hi, did that ever clear up with your lungs? I’m having that now…the left side tightness numbness … And when I cough it’s real breathy , like the air is getting in …hard to explain plus I have MS and yet another kidney infection…I sure don’t need pneumonia

My son has been sore all over. He says his whole body hurts arms legs and neck. Been having headachesome everyday but no fever. Has not had an a petite at all. I took him to Pediatric doctor and they say flu symptoms. I think he may have pneumonia. Do I take him to urgent care to get an x-ray to see what they say. It’s been since this Saturday. Your help is greatly appreciated.

I was diagnosed with walking pneumonia a couple of weeks ago. I was given antibiotics and finished them in a few a couple of days. While all of the worst symptoms are gone, I still have a bit of a phlegm-producing coughing and mild wheezing (mostly in the morning). I took a pulmonary function test a week ago and it came back “normal” though, the pulmonologist seems to think I have borderline asthma even though I’ve never had symptoms of asthma in the slightest. My question is, when will this cough and wheeze clear up?

did you have a fever?

My doctor said I could have asthma or walking pneumonia. The coughing is out of control, and I can’t take it anymore.

Is this really a thing everyone has been getting? Where is everyone? I’m in Brooklyn, NY

Alot of people, including myself, are having prolonged symptoms such as you describe. It seems to be one of the many bugs going around, if not walking pneumonia such as described above. These symptoms are the body working to ward off this mild form of bacterial pneumonia.

Hi I had a collapsed lung in 2015 was hospitalized for almost a month now this year I had a fever for two days and it was three days before Christmas, I wasn’t feeling good hard time breathing so I went to the hospital and they did a CT with something they injected a chest x-ray and they found I have a pnemonia they gave me a 7 day of leviquin will this do the job of clearing up the pnemonia. My name is audrey

Oh Levaquin is a very bad thing…they even have a lawsuit against them…I didn’t qualify because I got the generic…so if I were you I would get the brand name to be safe. One never knows what’ll happen

Hi Audrey,

So sorry to hear that you’re not doing well.

In terms of your question “will this do the job”, we can’t provide that answer. In fact, I doubt your doctor can say for sure. There are many factors including the specific bacteria that is the underlying cause of your pneumonia and whether that particular strain of bacteria is resistant to Leviquin or not. Clearly your doctor thinks that this was the best medicine for you, and I hope it will do the job.

If you are still feeling ill at the end of the seven days, it would be wise to contact your doctor again.

Sorry I couldn’t be more helpful.

@MsGreene
Note: I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, but I am not Dr. Greene and I am not a doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

Merry Christmas….I have been battling with pneumonia since late August. Well the last two days I have awakened with a fever and terrible cough (the cough was so bad my chest hurt. Should I go to the ER? Should I go to an urgent care? Thank you for your time 🎅🏻

Karen, how are you now?

wow karen, that’s terrible .. i’m 16 and i got walking pneumonia last may.. it lasted the whole month and i missed a whole month of school because of it.. i recently caught a cold and now i’m beginning to think that it’s walking pneumonia again .. so sorry that that’s been happening for you, too long! i know how bad it feels 😭😭

Karen,

How miserable. I’m so sorry you’re going through this and for so long. I assume you saw a doctor shortly after this started. It would be wise to talk with him or her again to discuss your symptoms. The doctor will likely want to see you again to do a physical exam and discuss possible treatment. This shouldn’t go on so long.

Best, @MsGreene
Note: I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, but I am not Dr. Greene and I am not a doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

Hey Guys,
I have dry cough for three months. I have eaten more medicines but it shows no signs of improvement. Now I’m feeling feverish, mild chills from my back side, fatigue, nose blocked and muscle pulsing. Could you please tell me what shall I do.

Hi doc been having a hard time Breathing when I cough and been having pain on my right side

Joseph,

Sounds like it’s time to see a doctor. You may have a bacteria infection that need to be treated with prescription medicine.

I hope that helps.
Best, @MsGreene
Note: I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, but I am not Dr. Greene and I am not a doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

I’ve got c punmonia e and m punmonia e and my doc put me on two Mo of cefdiner does that sound right?

For 3 weeks I had a severe dry cough that moved to a throat clearing type issue (looking back was probably asthmatic chest clearing to some degree)no pain, no fever, no difficulty breathing. Miserable, changed diet to no coffee, elevated bed, pearls, nyQuil cough, etc Multiple docs, ENT, 9 days of Prednisone clear chest X-ray during that time, until one doc gave me a Zpak. 3 days into dose, I finally felt better. A friend at work said she had it many times and was mycoplasma pneumonia. I felt much better,THEN 1 week later awoke with 99.5 temp and have had for a week from 99-100, but no cough, nothing other than slight pain in lower right rib cage. A doctor listened to my chest and ironically right where I felt that little pain he said he heard pneumonia (and I hadn’t told him). He prescribed Augmentin. Is this normal? No other symptoms other than minor loss of appetite and some mild malaise, anxiety.

how did your situation finally clear up?

This article was helpful to me and was the push I needed to bring my son to the doctor for the 3rd time in 7 days to finally get the correct diagnosis of pneumonia. The amoxicillin he was on was useless.

My son started antibiotics on 11/30 after seeing a doctor who thought that he did have a mycoplasma infection. Two weeks later, on 12/14 I started having sudden symptoms of bronchitis and a fever. I got the zpack right away and only had shortness of breath symptoms for 2 weeks. My daughter started with the same shortness of breath symptoms 10 days later on 12/24 and I started her on zpack right away too. She is recovering. Neither of us had a cough. None of the doctors (besides the doc who diagnosed my son) agree that it was/is a mycoplasma infection. My daughter and I did not have a cough (only shortness of breath) Could this be because we treated it early? I would think that with the long incubation for all of us that it was mycoplasma.

I’m curious if you can have walking pneumonia without feeling too horrible? I got sick on 9/23 and it started very mild (able to go to work and functioning at about 80%). I went to the Doctor on 9/29 and they said I had two strains of strep; group c and g. Then I started coughing really bad on 10/9 and went back to the Doctor on 10/10 and was told I had acute bacterial bronchitis and was given antibiotics and an inhaler. The X-ray done of my lungs on this visit was normal. About 1.5 weeks after this I wasn’t feeling 100% still and went back in and was told I have an ear infection and a sinus infection and was given more antibiotics and a steroid inhaler. I’ve been having pain in my ribs and pain in my back and I’m not sure if it’s my muscles. I’m still on my antibiotics and it’s been about 6 weeks since I initially got sick. I’m not sure if it could be walking pneumonia even though I don’t feel horribly sick, just not 100% or what else might be going on underlying?

I was diagnosed with pneumonia 5 days ago. I finished a 5 day course of azithromyacin but I don’t feel any better, or worse. Should I give it a few days or go back to doctor?

I’m wanting to know the same. Have you gotten any better?

Hi Karla,

Have you gone back to the doctor? What did he or she say?

Best, @MsGreene
Note: I answer a lot of questions on DrGreene.com, I am the co-founder of DrGreene.com, Dr. Greene’s business partner, but I am a not doctor. Please keep that in mind when reading my comments and replies.

I had pneumonia about a year ago (I was 19) and now I have a pain in my back I keep coughing through the day but in the night it’s so much worse! I wake up sometimes with a tight chest I’ve had this about a week now? I have headaches but this could be caused from work? I’m not sure what to do as I don’t want to worry anyone again?

I was diagnosed with pneumonia on May 232016, it started with me having an itchy throat, always clearing it all day, I began to cough and feel weak, dizzy, headaches, my legs felt as though they wanted to give out,my back was sore to touch, I couldn’t lie on on my back, I was in so much pain,all of this occurred while me being at work,I had been taking over the counter drugs, sacking on cough drops etc. for a week or so. I decided to go to an Immediate Med.I saw a doctor, at that time I was diagnosed with pneumonia , I was prescribed some cefdnifir capsules 300mg 1 capsule for 10 days and a cough syrup called homatropine hydrocodone syrup. The doctor stated that I need to take only a day off, the day that I was to return, I woke up feeling worst than before, so I went back to the Immediate Med. At that time I was told that I had bronchitis, at time I was prescribed an inhaler. And gave me an additional 3 days offf,when I returned to work, I realized that as i talked I got weak, at this time I was able to get in to see my primary care physician, he assured me that I had a mild case of pneumonia and that i had returned to work too early, I was given an injection and a week and half off work, might I add I’m going through menopause, don’t know if it’s fever or the menopause keeping me from getting well.

Stephanie,

This sounds miserable. All of it.

We give medication for fevers that are very high or for comfort. Keep in mind, fevers in the normal range don’t keep you from getting well. Dr. Greene writes, “I was surprised to learn in medical school that fever, far from being an enemy, is an important part of the body’s defense against infection. While a fever … signals to us that a battle might be going on…, the fever is fighting for the child, not against.”

If you think your symptoms are from menopause, it’s wise to talk to your Gyn and find solutions that will help you go through the transition. These symptoms, including hot flashes can make it harder for your body to heal from infections because they disturb your sleep. Right now, you need good, healthy sleep and after you’re over this infection, you’ll still need good sleep.

Hope that helps,
@MsGreene

So my 15 year old daughter was diagnosed with pneumonia about 2 weeks ago and finished all her meds (Z-Pak) now she has a deep cough that started dry but now she is starting to cough up phlegm. Should I take her back to the Doctor?

My three year old baby boy was recently diagnosed with walking pneumonia and was prescribed a five day azithromyocin regimen. We ccompleted that 100% two days ago and he seemed to start feeling better. however today he has a fever of 102.4 his cough is not too bad. My concern is the fever… I made him another aappointment for this evening.. but hoping to get a second opinion? Please??

I have had a lot of issues with my chest. I’ve had asthma, bronchitis bronchiolitis and a bunch of other chest infections as well as the common cold. I have never felt like I have in the past couple days like I have with any of those chest infections. I’ve told my mom repetitively to take me in because I’m sure this is walking pneumonia but she just thinks its the common cold I wish you would just Google the symptoms because I know this is walking pneumonia because my dad had it awhile ago can someone please give me advice on how to talk to her or talk to the doctor

Seems like students in oahu are contracting this. Maybe if you call the doctor yourself to show how serious you are? It’s easy to neglect symptoms if you’re not the one feeling them. I know that because of this unintentional neglect my appendix burst. Wish I would’ve just put my foot down to say I’m not moving from this chair until I get wheelchaired to a doctor!

Worried diagnosed with pneumonia but absolutely no coughing light fever and back pain 3 weeks now.

What causes back pain after X-rays are clear of pneumonia?

Hi doc I have being diagnosed with pneumonia innt right lungs. What I can’t understand how I don’t have a cough and don’t feel sick only a little shortness of breath and a mild fever sometimes and back pains got me worried if something else is wrong wht I don’t cough at all. Thanks in advance.

Loretta….I had pneumonia once, and it only seemed like a light cold, not very congested, and a cough now and then, but some pain in the back…ended up being pneumonia…My doctor could hear it at the bottom of my back..sometimes they have to listen quite closely, and move the stethescope around…and suddenly, they will say, ‘Yup, there it is, I can hear it”…so, sometimes you don’t feel as sick as you would think…I just returned from a trip, and haven’t felt well since, after being on a plane…it ends up I have walking pneumonia this time…but that seems to be accompanied by chills, just being so cold, headache, pain behind the eyes, sore throat, light fever, and feeling so tired…I just want to sleeep. Went to the Dr. and had a dose of zithromax, I think it was…that pretty much knocks it out of you, however, the tired feeling is still with me. That can linger longer… Hope you feel better..

I currently have the same symptoms you described Loretta. My back and neck are killing me and A slight cough is just beginning. Today I am scheduled to get a CT scan to as they found a couple small spots on my lungs with the chest x-ray. I’m scared! At this point I am praying it’s pneumonia. How did the Dr. diagnose you?

My 37yr old daughter fell ill whilst on holiday in florida from the UK in mid November. She visited a local daughter in florida – diagnosed with bronchitis given antibiotics and 2 other drugs. 3 weeks post holiday back in the UK is still ill can only manage a few hours out of bed due to exreme severe fatigue is coughing constantly has sinus congestion and soreness over central chest area mild laryngitis and diarrhea she has seen her GP 2 weeks ago who said chest is clear and diagnosed URTI of a viral nature. I would be grateful of your thoughts.

I had this disease when I was eight, I’m ten now and I’m still trying to help my legs to get stronger again.

Today I just went to the doctors and they diagnosed me with “Walking Pneumonia”. What is it? Is it permanent? If not, how can I cure it and approximately how long does it take to go away? Do I need to take days off from school to recover?

I’m been takING cephalexin 500mg and I stop! And now I was wondering if I can take the rest it’s been about a month please help! Thank you

I’ve been having bad rib pain on both sides. When I sleep on my back my ribs hurt even more. The only way it doesnt hurt is when I just sit. I can’t do anything cause it hurts.

That almost sounds like pleurisy.

Biaxin seems to work well. my cough is gone after 10 days of biaxin treatment 500mg twice a day

My three year old daughter had cough for 2 months finally diagnosed with myc pneumonia. She had clarithromycin for 7 days which gave a tremendous relief , almost no cough.now after 3 rd day since medicine stopped she is getting her cough worse.please reply me

Finish all the meds

Been working in Northern California for 4 months now…developed what started as a chest cold back in February…went to urgent care and was diagnosed with bronchitis…was given sulfameththoxazole/trimethoprim 800-160mg…after running through that…went back home to northern cal…coughing got worse and sleep less…finally went to emergency room last week after serious breathing issues at work…took chest X-rays and diagnosed with bacterial pneumonia…was given zpac…felt better for a few days…now I am back finishing job in Palo Alto…have no medication and still after almost two months of this cant sleep all night…have congestion which won’t leave…nose drips and dry cough…what is the next phase of nightmare I can expect?…I’m about running out of options in the money category…need to work to keep family going… This is horrible..any advice would be great..thanks

Robert Damian, I am wondering what ever happened with your illness, as all your symptoms except the hard time breathing I have myself. I do have lung cancer but the Oncologist told me he really didn’t believe the cancer has anything to do with it, they seen a little area around bronchial tube that they feel is a slight infection. I live in MI, I have had other people in the area say that they had something of this nature back in the winter months and it took 6 months before it went away, nothing helped ease the symptoms, they had to sleep sitting up.

Kind of a shot in the dark, but have you had a patchy red rash on your legs, by any chance? My brother thought he had pneumonia for a long time, but it turned out to be Valley Fever, a fungal infection: http://www.cdc.gov/features/valleyfever/ Especially if you have been in the southern Central Valley, or if your job involves digging, I would look into this.

Diagnosed finally with pneumonia lower left lobe and fluid lower right lobe on March 4. I was having severe pressure right rib and cough expelling dark green phlegm and felt horrible for 3 full weeks. Then felt as if someone was sitting on my chest. Dr kept saying upper respiratory infection. I went to dr every week then he finally ordered chest X-ray. I had to go to a different dr because that dr said my xray was normal however it showed pneumonia as I stated above. Prescribed levaquin 10 days. It has been 2.5 weeks a little over and now I’m struggling with post nasal drip and fatigue. Chest X-ray last week showed it cleared. I hope I start feeling a lot better soon.

I have RLL pneumonia . This is day 4.5 of treatment with one twice/day. Amox TR-K CLV 875-125, Symbicort 160/4.5 2 puffs twice/day, MucinexDM. I also take synthroid .100mcg, I use a netty pot. I’m a yoga crazy 56 yr, 104, 4’10” felt fine but this cough then fever led to Pnemonia, I do cough up green, and blow green from my nose. Feeling moderately better, but question the inhaler and see you do not list my antibiotic. Is this all normal?

I am an adult in my 40s. I was diagnosed with Walking Pneumonia 3 weeks ago. went on Z-Pak. started feeling better for a few days then cough got worse and chest started hurting. 3 weeks later I am on day 5 of 10 day course of Doxycycline..chest still hurts as it did when I started the course. do I go back for chest X-rays or wait till the course is done.

I was diagnosed with pneumonia in my right lung last July. I have had chest x-rays confirming it did go away. However it’s now March of the next year and I still have coughing spasms and they are worse at night when I am worn down. I’ve been to an allergist who told me I’m not allergic to much and he stopped my inhalers and fenofexadine allegra otc. I have had a spirometer test that came back well. They are sending me to an ENT to rule out reflux disease. I get frequent sinus infections as well so in the meantime I have been on several antibiotics and I start to feel a little better and then it all relapses again. Any suggestions? TY!

I got walking pneumonia last June (2015) and took z’pac as prescribed. I just started feeling bad again (Feb 2016)… I don’t want this again. I live in Nor Cal, seems like I knew at least 10-15 friends who got it back then and have had a hard time getting over it. Seems like it took me 6-10 weeks to get better. Funny my length of time between is the same as yours. ? Lack of energy and upper back aches are what I’m honing in on as bad bad case again. I’ve been coughing the last 3days and started with a sore throat…dry and scratchy…like a pine cone was reamed in it… Painful to breath in cool air. I can see that this is gonna last longer than I want.

I can relate to your symptoms, i have been battling walking pneumonia since March 10th. Now it is already April 5th and i still feel lack of energy.

I went to the ER the other night because I was coughing severely and my lungs were majorly congested. They told me it was just a severe case of bronchitis, they gave me a z-pak to clear up my lungs and it worked. Today I took the last pill I had from it. All the sudden I’m trying to sleep and my heart, lung and neck start throbbing badly, like a very sharp pain. I’m just a little worried considering I’ve had pneumonia 7 times and I’m only 18, someone help please. Thank you.

The same crap happened to me last week bro! At first my doctor said it was bronchitis and then he gave me the “Z” pack with an inhaler. I’m on my last pill and my body feels like it’s getting worse! Then I hear about “Walking Pneumonia??” that’s going around where I live in California. My stomach hurts, I’ve lost TEN pounds, have NO appetite, muscle spasms, back aches, itching and cold/hot flashes! I’ve never had pneumonia before and I’m scared to death! My doctor just sent me home with a diagnosis of bronchitis. Whatever! It’s more than that if I’m losing weight and I keep forgetting things. I’m in college, too.

My wife was diagnosed pneumonia about one month ago. We took the treatment and now she is better, but the dry cough is still there. She can’t sleep at night, Through out the day she suffers from dry cough. We also tried home remedies, but it seems useless. Kindly advice what to do.

Try getting an old asthma medication called zaditen or ketotifen to dry up excess fluids in lungs. It takes away the need to cough need a Drs prescription.

After an urgent care visit, and two doctors apt.’s my kids were diagnosed with pneumonia (after two months of copping) . They were given amoxicillin and it has been 2 days with no improvement. It’s -35 *F here and I’d like to see them get better soon. Any help would be great! :)

They are using musinex and a nebulizer also.

Amoxicillin does not do anything for atypical bacteria like Mycoplasma. Your Dr is an idiot if that’s really what they prescribed.

My 18 month old was just diagnosed with this as well. We hav d been to the Dr so many times in the last few months and they always said cold until today and a 2 hour appointment with xrays. He scared me with his breathing last night is what made me take him again. He has heart issues so breathing is a big deal and they want to rule out infections and viruses first. I was so worried we were going to the hospital again. But as long as the medicine works they said we don’t have to! So day 1 meds are down and he only has to take it 3 days. This momma and her boy needs some sleep so hopefully this medicine works!

Hi just been told I have this.but I’ve had a cough same as this on and off for the past 2 years.I was seen by an ENT. They told me prolonged use of inhalers made my voice croaky. We are visiting the US and saw the doctor last night as I was having problems with asthma due to the coughing, etc. Surely it can’t go on that long. At home they say my chest is clear. It’s just viral it will go when it’s ready…..

Hi and thanks for the info in this post. I’m 32years old and have had walking pneumonia for 2 weeks now. It started just like you said like a bad head cold be for settling in my chest. I just finished a 5 day z-pack and only now starting to feel a little better. My cough is still bad especially at night. Really hope I quit coughing and my body aches go away soon.

Ugh u sound irritating

Hi my daughter is 12 and she got microplasma and was treated with antibiotics ,but her cough is still their after one month anything that can be recomanded .

Even though I’m an adult, you are the first doctor to explain it this way – the aftermath of mycoplasma! Thank you. I feel great, energy back – but the dry cough and lingering symptoms made me wonder if it was gone. But it’s the body just getting rid of things and building back up. You totally get it–this makes all the sense in the world. Thank you thank you. My night cough keeps me so hoarse – I haven’t had a voice since I got infected! So I may take a night cough medicine just to sleep and wake up with a normal voice!

I hear you ,I started with an irritated throat .I thought maybe because I ate some spicy chichen from popeyes,they accidently gave me.Allergies to certain spices..sothe throatproblem went on a few days then I started coughing.So I took some cold meds,but my neck started hurting and spine started feeling lIke I felt warm stuff running down my spine.Day 7 back aches at work legs hurting started Cephalon 500mg 3 days taken so far and coughing till gaging and neck stiff.My ribs and chest hurt ,plus I still eat like crazy no fever just head aches sometimes.

I know this is old but thank you! I’m just getting over walking pneumonia and the lingering dry cough had me worried because it’s been a couple of weeks since I finished my meds. This all totally makes sense and makes me less worried.

Hi there, my 2 yr old currently has walking pneumonia and I am worried my other baby might catch it -he is only four months old and exclusively breastfed. Does this type of pneumonic affect young babies?

well really is spread from person to person when one person coughs or sneezes on the other person. I’ve had it before myself. I’m not sure how I got it. you get it from bacteria and example is mycoplasma. it’s not as bad as regular pneumonia it’s much more mild. the walking part of its name means that you can still do daily things but you still feel like a cold.

This was a great article. Good detail and presented well. Easy to understand with great advice. Thank you.