Pneumonia without a fever


Under one lung infection one understands one acute or chronic progressive inflammation of the lung tissue (pneumonia). The inflammation can be due to either Alveoli (alveolar pneumonia) or the scaffolding of the lungs (interstitial pneumonia). Mixed forms can of course also occur.

If the inflammation predominantly takes place in the alveoli, it is often referred to as typical pneumonia, which is characterized by its classic symptoms such as sudden fever, cough with expectoration and shortness of breath. If the inflammatory process takes place in the supporting and connective tissue of the lungs, on the other hand, one speaks of atypical pneumonia, in which the classic symptoms may be less pronounced or not at all.

Pneumonia without fever, also known as "cold pneumonia", can definitely occur. Due to its atypical course, it is not always easy to recognize it directly, so that it is no less dangerous than classic pneumonia for precisely that reason.


Pneumonia is generally caused by various pathogens, which can be bacteria, viruses or fungi. Which pathogen is most likely to be considered depends on where the pneumonia was acquired, i.e. on an outpatient basis in a home environment or nosocomially in the hospital, e.g. as part of another treatment measure for which an inpatient stay was necessary. In addition, the typical pathogens have different sites of inflammation. Some pathogens are more likely to cause inflammation in the alveoli, others more in the supporting tissue of the lungs.

Read more on the topic: Nosocomial infection

The most common causative agent of ambulatory pneumonia is the bacterium Streptococcus pneumoniae (pneumococci). The most common causative agents of nosocomial alveoli are the bacteria Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus or Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

Community-acquired atypical pneumonia is classically triggered by bacteria such as mycoplasma, chlamydia or viruses (e.g. influenza). Nosocomial atypical pneumonia is most commonly caused by bacteria such as Legionella (Legionella pneumoniae) or fungi (Aspergillus fumigatus, Pneumocystis jirovecii).

Other causes of pneumonia can also be parasites, inhaled poisons or aspiration (inhalation) of gastric juice / acid.

Read more on this topic at: Causes of Pneumonia


If pneumonia is suspected, the diagnosis should be confirmed by a thorough physical examination. This is not always easy, since atypical pneumonia without fever often does not show any classic, pronounced examination findings. When listening to the lungs, one typically hears rattling noises and exacerbated breathing noises. In addition, one can often hear a muffled tapping sound when tapping the back.

In this case, a blood test for signs of infection and inflammation (e.g. white blood cells, C-reactive protein) and pathogens (blood cultures) can help. In addition, the pathogen can be determined using saliva samples or samples of lung secretions. In particularly unclear cases, a tissue removal (biopsy) from the lung tissue may be necessary to determine the exact clinical picture. In addition, an X-ray of the chest is often made, in which e.g. Shadows in the lungs can give further indications of a possibly existing pneumonia.

Read more on this topic at:

  • Blood tests for pneumonia
  • Diagnosis of pneumonia


The symptoms are often very different, depending on whether it is typical or atypical pneumonia.

Atypical pneumonia, in which the inflammatory focus is mainly on the supporting tissue of the lungs, often have less pronounced symptoms.

In addition to shortness of breath, which, depending on the severity of the disease, can occur either during exercise or even at rest, there is usually an unproductive cough. The cough is dry and not accompanied by sputum. When a fever occurs, it is usually not as high as with classic, typical pneumonia, i.e. below <38.5 ° C. Under certain circumstances, the fever can also be completely absent. The breathing rate may increase and performance may be restricted due to the shortage of air that may occur. The strength of the subjective feeling of illness can vary greatly from person to person.

If the lungs are also affected by the inflammation (pleurisy), breathing-dependent pain in the chest area can occur.

Read more on the subject at:

  • Pneumonia Symptoms "
  • "Signs of pneumonia"
  • Pneumonia

Without a cough and fever

Pneumonia can definitely do without it fever and occur without a cough. As a rule, it is then a so-called atypical pneumonia with predominant involvement of the supportive tissue of the lungs (interstitial pneumonia).

If the pneumonia is only noticeable through more or less pronounced shortness of breath or through unspecific symptoms of a flu-like infection, it is not always easy to recognize them directly and to treat them adequately as such.

Further information on the subject can be found here: Pneumonia without a cough


One of the first therapeutic measures for pneumonia is strict bed rest in order to give the body the opportunity to relax and regenerate. It is also important to ensure sufficient fluid intake and to provide the body with sufficient nutrients. If a fever occurs, antipyretic drugs may be given.

Depending on the severity of the shortness of breath, it may be necessary to give oxygen via a nasal tube. In all cases, breathing exercises and inhalations with saline solution make sense. Whether treatment should be given by the family doctor or in the hospital always depends on the severity of the pneumonia and any pre-existing or secondary diseases. If it is pneumonia that was caused by bacteria, antibiotic therapy makes sense in any case to fight the pathogens efficiently. If the pneumonia is caused by viruses, antivirals can be used. Antibiotics are used to prevent additional infection (superinfection) from bacteria. Antifungal drugs can be used for fungal infections.

Find out more about the topic here: Antibiotics for pneumonia.


The duration of pneumonia can vary considerably. It often depends on the pathogen, the course, the therapy and the type of pneumonia (typical or atypical).

With correct, timely therapy, the symptoms of pneumonia usually subside within 2-3 weeks. Symptoms can only last up to 12 weeks if the course is severe or if there is no, incorrect or too late therapy. One then speaks of chronic pneumonia. Any pre-existing and secondary diseases and the general condition of the immune system or the body's defenses also contribute to the duration of the disease, so that the healing of pneumonia can vary greatly from person to person.

If the pneumonia is adequately treated with the right antibiotic, the symptoms will improve significantly within 3-4 days. Recovery should take place after a minimum of 10 days with uncomplicated courses.

Also read the article: Pneumonia Therapy.

Risk of infection from pneumonia without a fever

Exactly how long pneumonia is contagious cannot be said across the board, as the course can be very different from individual to individual and from many different factors such as Type of pneumonia, the course, of the Heaviness, of the Effectiveness of the drugs and from the Strength of the immune system depends.

In principle, pneumonia pathogens are contagious up to complete eradication and can via droplets of saliva at the Cough, sneeze or Speak transmitted and infect other people. But not everyone who ingests these pathogens also gets sick and suffers from pneumonia at the same time. The intact immune system of a healthy person can usually fight off the pathogens.

In general, it can be roughly said that after starting an adequate Antibiotic therapy the pneumonia within 3-4 days loses its infectivity. At the latest after the end of the therapy and the complete disappearance of all symptoms, the risk of infection should no longer exist.

Pneumonia in Children

Children's immune systems are usually not fully developed. Therefore, they are generally more susceptible to infections, pathogens and thus also to pneumonia.

Pneumonia is one of the most common respiratory diseases in children and young children. If left untreated and undetected, they can even become life-threatening and lead to the death of the child.

In children and toddlers in particular, atypical pneumonia can often be detected, with which the usual symptoms often do not occur, so that a diagnosis is not always easy. A high fever and cough with sputum may be absent or only mild.

Typical symptoms in children with pneumonia without a fever are nostrils, accelerated breathing, apathetic behavior and an increased pulse rate.

Read more about pneumonia in children here