PMR and Pneumonia

Here in northwestern US, wildfires kept the air polluted for several weeks this summer (Blocked out the sun and made for spectacular red sunrises and sets.).

With the heavy smoke, I started having allergy/asthma symptoms which morphed into chest pain. A trip to my gp landed me in emergency hospital for possible heart attack. Good news, no heart attack , but bad news, pneumonia.

This is the 2nd pneumonia I've had this year!! Has anyone else experienced increased upper respiratory disorders like asthma and pneumonia with PMR?

This is year four, on 6 mg prednisone, and trying to get to a good place to continue taper. I've had pneumonia vaccine.

Thanks for any thoughts J

18 Replies

  • How far apart were the episodes of pneumonia?

  • First episode in february, now this one.

  • Hmm, that's a fair time. I wondered if the first one wasn't fully cleared up and this was a recurrence but usually that is within 4 to 6 weeks or so.

  • Have u heard of any correlation between compromised immune system, (PMR) and susceptability to bacterial pneumonia? Thought if anyone would know.....😁 Would be you..

    thanks, off to take tons of abx and drink my water. J

  • What bacterium is it? Have they cultured it and identified it?

  • No culture...just xray, physical exam,and home with cipro and amoxicillin.

  • There is a known suspected link between chlamydia pneumonia infection and PMR/CGA. It would make sense for them to culture the bacterium and rule that out.

    Just google chlamydia pneumonia polymyalgia rheumatica to get a load of links. It is mentioned in Chapter 1 of Dasgupta and Dejaco's book about PMR and GCA in the Oxford Rheumatology Library - and you should get a link to it.

  • Thank you. There is a lot of info, I think Ill take some links, abstracts/conclusions to my GP and ask for tests to rule out. Have I mentioned how much I appreciate your help?❣️ Jerri

  • I have a compromised immune system due to breast ca,than picked up infection from a reconstruction surgery and now the PMR/GCA. GP seem to think it was caused from infection. It never seem to end. Still waiting for an appointment with a Rheumatologist.

  • ~Purplecrow I sympathize for you very much with the fires resulting in the lack of breathable fresh air.

    Was prone to respiratory issues (asthma, bronchitis & pneumonia) as a youngster & did manage to grow out of the worst of the asthma during my teens unless I had a bronchitis or a chest cold.

    PMR diagnosed Jan 2015 & must say I struggle in winter with mild upper respiratory virus's now - I never seem to be without the feeling of a runny nose & of course our spring brings its usual share of allergy onset too.

    I work hard at nipping this in the bud as quickly as possible as Cipro has been the only antibiotic left to work for me with subsequent pneumonia's over the years.

    Presently I have multiple tendon/ligament issues & wonder how much Cipro may have contributed to the damage I am now living with.

    As PMRpro suggests, it would be ideal to identify what your present bacterium is.

    May clean breathable fresh air be with you in abundance - wishing you speedy recovery :)

  • I need to correct my earlier note about which abx I am taking. I am using zithromax (not cipro). I was really specific with the doc about avoiding that class of drugs! So its zithromax and amoxocillin.

  • Another possibility is that it could be an auto-immune pneumonia called "eosinophilic pneumonia ". I went through 4 months of repeated antibiotics which seemed to clear up the pneumonia only to have it reoccur. Finally when a pulmonologist ordered a "bronchial washing" to examine ling fluid it was discovered that it was not bacterial and not viral and not fungal, and the fluid was very high in eosinophils. This cannot be detected in blood tests, only in lung fluid. Treatment was a short course of prednisone which permanently cleared it up.

  • This sounds like a nasty bug. Thanks for the info. Im compiling a list to take to my gp for discussion. J

  • I can sympathize. We are in B.C. Some days we couldn't see 100 yds down the road and the air was so thick and acrid. Couldn't take a deep breath. Husband was sick for days with sinus infection and deep cough. Lots of days we didn't even go out of the house. Not surprised this has affected you. Hope you are feeling better.

  • Thanks, Im 36 hours into abx, and think they are beginning to make a difference.

    It was nasty here too, couldnt see the mountain ranges or San Juan Islands for a couple of weeks. Hope you gotten through the worst of it also. J

  • The depth and breadth of this smoke is remarkable. I live in North Idaho, and most of my friends, young and old and in between, are having breathing issues with it. I am back on my inhalers for asthma. Wish you luck getting this controlled soon!

  • Thank you. Didnt realize it was so harsh till I ended up in ER. 😝

    Better today. Regards, J

  • I have no helpful information to add to the experts' lists, but want you to know I'm thinking about you and sending you good thoughts. I hope you're feeling much better soon. Maybe today's rain will help clear out the smoke!

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