There are different types of pneumonia.
Pneumonia simply means infection of the lungs, and the cause of this infection and resulting disease can be from a variety of factors. Pneumonia causes 1.1 million hospitalizations each year, according to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Clinton’s spokesman told CNN today that the presidential candidate was “not contagious.” This would indicate that she probably does not have certain types of viral pneumonia. But without more information, it is still not clear what type of pneumonia Clinton contracted.
Here is an overview of the different types of pneumonia.
A variety of bacteria can lead to lung infections, the most common type being Streptococcus pneumoniae. This type of pneumonia can occur after an infection such as the common cold or the flu, or it can occur on its own.
Staphylococcus aureus – the bacteria that causes staph infections – can also cause lung infections. It usually occurs in people with weakened immune systems, such as children or hospital patients, but can occur in anyone.
Atypical pneumonia can occur when common bacteria called Mycoplasma pneumoniae, which live in the mouth, enter the lungs. The bacteria can grow slowly, causing a dry cough, but not severe symptoms. This disease was once called “gait pneumonia” because many people would not realize they had the disease and often people do not need bed rest. About one to 10 in 50 cases of community-acquired pneumonia (lung infections that develop outside of a hospital) in the United States are caused by M. pneumoniae, according to the CDC.
Symptoms may include chest pain when you breathe or cough, fever, fatigue, or, in people over 65, a drop in normal body temperature.
Viruses can also cause serious lung infections. Pneumonia after getting the flu virus can be dangerous. The flu virus weakens the immune system, making it easier for dangerous bacteria to cause infection.
While the flu or the flu may be the viruses people are most aware of, other viral illnesses, including respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and human parainfluenza virus can cause pneumonia.
Pneumonia caused by certain viruses, including the herpes virus and adenoviruses, are usually rare in healthy adults, but can affect people with weakened immune systems or children.
In rare cases, some people can get pneumonia from fungi. In these cases, the person usually has a severely weakened immune system and can develop an infection from certain types of fungi.
One type of fungus is Pneumocystis jirovecii, which can live in the lungs for long periods of time, according to the CDC. Infection with this form of the fungus was particularly dangerous for people living with HIV / AIDS, although newer drugs helped decrease the likelihood of a dangerous infection.