Pulmonary Actinomycosis

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Pulmonary actinomycosis is a rare bacterial lung infection known as thoracic actinomycosis, and it is not contagious. This rare condition mainly affects people between the ages of 30 and 60 and occurs more in men than in women. It will be a lengthy process for the treatment to be successful.

How this condition is caused is by a bacterium from the genus actinomyces. These bacteria typically are found in your mouth and the gastrointestinal tract. While most of the time they are harmless, they can also cause an infection when the tissue becomes damaged. The condition generally develops after an illness or an injury from a tooth abscess or gum disease. The damaged tissues can increase the higher risk for the bacteria to infect your lungs or other parts of the body. Often, pulmonary actinomycosis is when a mixture of bacteria, food, and saliva from the mouth or stomach enters the lung instead of the stomach.

Those who are at high risk for this rare condition include those who have:

  • Dental abscess
  • Improper/poor oral hygiene
  • Emphysema
  • Bronchiectasis
  • Heavy consumption of alcohol

To prevent pulmonary actinomycosis, it is best to maintain good oral hygiene to lower any risk and prevent infections. It would be best if you keep your teeth and gums in pristine shape. To help prevent bacteria from overgrowing and spreading, you need to remember to:

  • Brush and floss your teeth twice daily
  • Keep your regular dental examinations and cleanings
  • Reduce sugar food and beverages
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