Infectious Disease

Pneumonia Program

When a child is sick, parents are often unsure when to take them to the doctor. Is it just a short, seasonal cold? Or, could it be something more serious like pneumonia? If your family pediatrician believes your child might have pneumonia, he or she may recommend taking the child to Tufts Medical Center in Boston for additional care.

Once at Tufts Medical Center, our Pediatric Infectious Disease specialists will evaluate your child for pneumonia, typically by testing their respiratory rate and using methods like a chest X-ray to get a view of his or her lungs.

Pneumonia treatments

The first steps in treating pneumonia in children include determining the extent of your child’s breathing problems and whether or not they need to be intubated. We also may admit your child into the hospital so that he or she can receive IV antibiotics, IV fluids and/or oxygen treatments.

Once your child’s medical condition is stable, we often change to oral antibiotics, which are recommended in the majority of pediatric pneumonia cases. We also often suggest increasing fluid intake, using a humidifier and taking over-the-counter pain medication.

Preventing pneumonia

We encourage you to talk with your family pediatrician about getting your child vaccinated for pneumonia. It is an important tool in helping to fight off this infection.

To make an appointment, please call 617-636-8100.