Bacterial pneumonia is a lung infection caused by bacteria (such as staph or strep).
Bacteria that cause pneumonia are contagious and usually found in fluid from the mouth or nose of someone who's infected. Illness can spread when an infected person coughs or sneezes on others, by sharing drinking glasses and eating utensils, and when someone touches the used tissues or handkerchiefs of an infected person.
Symptoms include fever, cough, and, sometimes, difficulty breathing. Sometimes, a person might also have stomach pain and vomiting.
Most cases of bacterial pneumonia are treated successfully with 1-2 weeks of antibiotics. Even after the infection has cleared, coughing may continue for several weeks or months but should steadily improve.
All A to Z dictionary entries are regularly reviewed by KidsHealth medical experts.
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