Recovering from pneumonia: Was admitted... - Lung Conditions C...

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Recovering from pneumonia

Nanny49 profile image

Was admitted to hospital 10 days ago with pneumonia having been quite ill for 8 days. Been home for 6 days now after 5 days in hospital. Feel much better than I did, but this awful tiredness is getting me down. Had a shower this morning and slept for an hour afterwards! Can't stay awake for more than a couple of hours and all I've done today is 15 minutes ironing and made myself a smoothie. I know everyone is different but is there any sort of yardstick as to when I might feel like rejoining the human race?! Have severe emphysema but strangely my breathlessness is not too bad. Probably because I'm doing so little!

30 Replies

Hi , I understand how I feel ,but don't rush these things ,I've had it to ,and the copd nurse told me I was expecting far too much of myself ,and should yes do a little bit ,,,but important to rest to ,they said it can take up to six months to feel like your old self ,so don't feel guilty about having a nap now and turn ,take it easy ,let your body recover ,

,thinking of you ,

Nanny49 profile image
Nanny49 in reply to Nanny1086

Thanks for your prompt reply, Nanny. Oh dear - up to 6 months puts my 6 days into perspective. I can see what you say would make sense. When I think of recovery time for a simple bout of 'flu, I realise my expectations are unrealistic. Will just have to enjoy the enforced rest!

I am not surprised at all, Nanny. I had pneumonia with septicaemia some years ago. I was ill about a week before the GP diagnosed and sent me to Addenbrookes for a week. I was so exhausted for quite a few weeks after discharge. It does take a while but you will get there XX

Nanny49 profile image
Nanny49 in reply to pergola

Thanks, pergola. Whilst frustrating, it's also strangely reassuring to know my recovery is following a fairly mormal pattern. Small steps - quite literally it seems. Thanks for your support.

Nanny1086 profile image
Nanny1086 in reply to pergola

Same here ,pneumonia and septasyma ,I was admitted 3 days before Xmas 2008 ( so they tell me and was in ICU until jan 7 th ,it was touch and go for a while ,,,,but here I am ) I'm 69 now ,and the copd nurses told me it takes time ,and not to rush things ,,,,I was back in the gym by August ,,,,I feel quite proud of how I coped ,,,but then again I didn't do it on my own ,I was well looked after in ICU and by the copd team when I came home ,and of course my family ,time is a great healer ,,,,,take care ,

Nanny49 profile image
Nanny49 in reply to Nanny1086

Wow - that must have been scary for everyone! Beginning to realize it's going to take time and slow and steady seems to be the answer. My body doesn't seem keen to let me overdo things anyway! Will make a real effort to be sensible and just do a little bit more each day but only if I feel able. Thanks for your good wishes.

Hi, nanny49, I had pneumonia many years ago and it really takes it out of you. Listen to your body and rest when you need to...i tried to do too much too soon and then relapsed and made myself worse.

Your lungs are precious, eat as well as you can and pace yourself, gentle walking around the house at first or garden. If you feel no better when your antibiotics have finished go back to your GP .

Have you tried ringing the BLF helpline for advice if you are in the UK

Best wishes

Thanks, knitter. By all accounts I'm expecting too much too soon! I have managed a couple of trips downstairs today and if the weather is kind, a stroll round the garden could be my target for tomorrow. Will ring BLF as you suggest. Thanks again.

Hi Nanny, I had pneumonia in February and 8 weeks of I V. There were nurses in the hospital who had it in what seems to be this year's epidemic. They told me that they (normally fit people) were still washed out by it. We are having to contend with it on top of damaged lungs.I have steadily got better but I do find that my energy will suddenly disappear. Be kind to yourself. Do a little bit when you feel like it. Eat good food, if like me you don't feel like eating much, eat little bits when you want. I hate the expression 'good days and bad days' but that is how it is. One day at a time xx

Nanny49 profile image
Nanny49 in reply to

Thanks for that, stillstanding63. What you say makes a lot of sense. My appetite is gradually returning but sometimes the effort of eating is just too much! When that happens I whip up a smoothie with nuts and greens so I'm getting nutrition. Thinking of working out an exercise programme - maybe 2 trips downstairs and a stroll round the garden tomorrow. Will be more than today - by the end of the week I may even be able to load the washing machine. Beginning to realize it took a good while to get so ill, so stands to reason recovery won't be speedy. Reassuring to know my recovery is following a normal pattern as was beginning to think I'd be stuck like this forever!

Hi ,if your GP surgary has got copd nurse team there ask to see them ,they are brilliant ,and when your feeling more like your old self ( weeks/months) ask to do the PULMARY REHAB COURSE ,you won't regret it ,,now rest ,best wishes ,

Nanny49 profile image
Nanny49 in reply to Nanny1086

Thanks for that advice, Nanny. Will have to ask about COPD nurse team - not too I,pressed with GP surgery at the moment but won't tar all with the same brush! Did PR last year but think I will ask to repeat when I feel strong enough.

Nanny! I had the flu, not pneumonia, but just the flu and I was absolutely floored for weeks ! Baby steps girl! Listen to your body it's been through a very serious illness and will take time to recover. Take care and rest'

Best wishes,



Nanny49 profile image
Nanny49 in reply to camping-girl

Judging by the answers I've had, there is no quick fix. Will have to do as everyone says and let time be the healer! Seems 'baby steps' it is for a while at least.

Sorry to hear about your pneumonia. I had viral pneumonia which took a full twelve months to clear. Just do what you can and pay attention to what your body needs - there is no advantage in trying too hard.

Best wishes for a full (and speedy) recovery.

Nanny49 profile image
Nanny49 in reply to Tetrazzini

Definite common thread coming through in replies! Seems this is not a quick fix situation. Beginnng to realise that not trying too hard is going to be the quickest route to recovery. Will have to brush up my patience which has always been in short supply! Thanks for your good wishes.

Hi Nanny, I too had pneumonia (double, i.e. both lungs) leaving hospital end of March. So its been four months now and Im still not quite back to normal. Six months is what i was told too, so that seems to be the consensus. When i got home i couldn't climb the stairs at all - not because of breathlessness though that wasn't good, but because my leg muscles had deconditioned so badly. That happens so please take it easy and build up slowly. An exercise plan is a good idea to motivate you but let it be a guide, not a dictator! If you don't feel up to it, then that's probably your body telling you not to at that moment.

I gradually built up my fitness til i was able to go to PR which I've only just finished and its helped a lot. But still some way to go with the exhaustion, and the heavy ABs they give you can cause depression which Im still dealing with.

A lot of people here had it this winter - it is a bit shocking how much more it affects us than a "normal" exacerbation. Good luck with your healing and let us know how you are getting on :)

Oh my word! I could be looking at Christmas. Perhaps I'll make that my target just to keep things in perspective. Like you, I find stairs a problem. My legs feel like lead weights! Not too bad with breathlessness but that's probably because everything is going at snail's pace! Slowly, slowly etc. will let you know how I progress. Will be good for me to see progress is being made, albeit slowly. Thanks for your good wishes.

When I was 16 I had severe double pneumonia, it took months to get better then. It must be far harder to recover when older and when you have COPD.

I have had pleurisy twice, once the dry, then a pleural effusion. They both took it out of me.

Nan, the only solution for you, is to eat regularly, fruit and veg very necessary.

Eggs, wholemeal bread, a few naughty treats, chicken and fish. Small regular meals are better than one big one.

Plan your day to include rest periods. Get up and dress in something pretty, brush your hair. Have breakfast with a cuppa. Rest for an hour or two. Have an hour doing what you feel you can manage, but without tiring yourself.

More rest, then lunch. Put your feet up for the afternoon, then have your tea/dinner. In the evening, snack on fruit and things you like. Do what you like, even if it is sitting with your feet up. Then prepare for bed.

Rest as much as you can, get up between rests to keep the blood flow going.

Each day I hope you will feel a little better.

This is a tried and tested way. My daughter was seriously in January and I helped nurse her through it. She will never be fully better due to long term complications, but the Doctors were delighted by her progress.

Wearing nice things and doing your hair are good morale boosters. My daughter got dressed, every day, as soon as the nurse had been.

She wasn't allowed out for weeks in case of infection.

I do hope you feel better sooner than you expect. I would say September will see you feeling yourself again.

I apologise for the long winded lecture Nan.

Nanny49 profile image
Nanny49 in reply to Azure_Sky

Thanks for your advice, Azure_Sky. Makes good sense and will bear it in mind. Today wasn't so good. Did get dressed but not much else! Only managed one trip downstairs when I had planned a stroll round the garden too. My legs feel so heavy. Will try again tomorrow. Glad to hear your daughter made some recovery- she's fortunate to have you. My daughter is very good but works full time so the days drag. Thanks for your good wishes.

Hi Nan,know what you mean,the slow recovery seems to drag on and on.Then next time you look at the calendar 6 months have passed " where,d they go? " lol.A wee suggestion that might help,probiotics after or even along with antibiotics and or natural yoghurt.I,m on azithromycin full time and benefit from these greatly.Best of luck,regards D. 💐

Nanny49 profile image
Nanny49 in reply to FarmerD

Thanks, Farmer D. I know you're suffering a good deal yourself so appreciate you taking time to reply. I do take a probiotic each morning - first thing I do in fact. Like to think it helped whilst I was on antibiotics as I didn't suffer any stomach upset despite large doses. Drs did talk about putting me on azithromycin as I've had 10 lots of abs this year! Have to go for follow up blood test next week, an echocardiogram (awaiting appt) and follow up appt with consultant. Then they will decide way forward. Many on here have had success with azith so hopefully it will work for me if they decide on that. Glad to hear it's working for you.

Have you been checked out for sleep Apnea, you would be surprised the amount of people that have it. Tiredness is the top symptom of sleep Apnea i know as that is what took me to the doctor . I was having over 50 episodes of stop breathing in my deepest sleep . They put me in hospital for 1 night and wired me up to machines that relayed to their computer,since they prescribed the cpap machine i have slept at night takes a few weeks to get used to the cpap but feel so refreshed upon waking now. I also had pneumonia 2 years ago and they have me on antibiotics now to ward off infections as pneumonia does weaken the lungs they toldme hope this has helped.

Nanny49 profile image
Nanny49 in reply to Rainy1952

Thanks, Rainy. My husband has a clap machine for sleep apneoia but I'm fairly sure I don't suffer. Consultant suggested I may go in azithromycin as I've already had 10 lots of abs this year! Which abs are you on?

Nanny49 profile image
Nanny49 in reply to Nanny49

Cpap not clap machine!

Azure_Sky profile image
Azure_Sky in reply to Nanny49


I think a stroll round the garden is rather ambitious, especially after climbing down a flight of stairs.

Morning nanny took me a good 3 to 6 months to get over pneumonia, the weight loss was the main thing , helped the buildup drinks from the Gp, take things steady rest when you feel like it , accept help and you should be fine . Keep away from infections , X

Hi Nanny , it took me a good three to six months to feel more like me , take things steady sleep when you feel like a rest, build up drinks helped too ,and come Nov you should be ok with your Christmas shopping although doing on line by passes all the nasty germs, which you need to keep away take care of you

It took me 4 months and I am now just working on regaining my strength. This is something that you can't rush hon.

PS-Drink alot of fluids, water and pedialyte or anything with electrolytes.

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