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Pneumonia Clinical Research

Learn about Achieve's Pneumonia Clinical Trials

Woman who has contracted pneumoniaDo you know why clinical trials for pneumonia are so important? It’s an all too common lung infection that can be caused by a range of viruses, bacteria and fungi. The best way to prevent an infection is through vaccination. Clinical research studies like the ones conducted here in Birmingham, AL help specialists refine and improve the pneumonia vaccine.

Since the symptoms of this lung infection can range from mild to severe, there are a wide range of treatments available for pneumonia. The most appropriate course of treatment will depend on several factors:

  • What actually caused the infection
  • The patients age and overall health
  • Severity of their symptoms

If the person who contracted pneumonia is otherwise healthy, than their body can usually beat the illness within 3 weeks. However, there are cases where this infection can be life-threatening. Current best methods of prevention include:

  • Remembering to wash your hands frequently
  • Getting your annual flu shot (influenza can easily lead to pneumonia)
  • Getting vaccinated against pneumococcal pneumonia if you’re at higher risk

Most Common Causes of Pneumonia

Previous research studies have shown that one-third of diagnosed cases here in America can be traced back to some form of respiratory virus. These pose a significant risk for both children, adolescents and young adults. The influenza virus is the most common cause of pneumonia amongst older adults.

Although more rare, the following viruses can all cause this common lung condition:

  • Rhinovirus
  • Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) virus
  • Respiratory syncytial virus
  • Herpes simplex virus

How Does Pneumonia Affect the Human Body?

When healthy, germs are filtered out of the air we breathe as it passes through the nose and airways. Cleaner air means the lungs stay healthier (it’s why we strongly discourage taking up smoking as a habit). However, this system isn’t perfect, and some germs can go unfiltered and infect the lungs.

A person is much more likely to develop an infection if:

  • Their immune system is weaker
  • The germ is more potent, or there is a larger amount of them
  • The system fails to filter the germs in the air

If these germs reach the lungs, the alveolar (tiny air sacs) become inflamed and fill with fluid. This reaction is what produces the tell-tale symptoms associated with pneumonia such as:

  • Trouble breathing
  • Coughing
  • Chills
  • Fever

Serious complications can arise if this illness prevents too much oxygen from reaching the bloodstream. The cells of the body can’t function properly without oxygen. This can create a chain reaction leading to further proliferation of the infection and eventually death.

The lungs can be impacted in two different ways by pneumonia, which results in two different types of infections:

  • Lobar Pneumonia – The infection is localized to only one lobe or portion of the patient’s lung.
  • Bronchial Pneumonia (Bronchopneumonia) – The infection becomes widespread with patches of inflammation blooming across both lungs.

If you have never participated in a clinical study before, we recommend checking out our resource pages here. Clinical trial participation is not the easiest choice to make and the experience may vary, but volunteers are incredibly important and needed. Participating in a pneumonia vaccine clinical trial in Birmingham, AL may only require agreeing to let our researchers have a copy of your test results, but most will require a little more involvement.

All participants will be compensated for time and travel, and any study related care. The following are all provided free of charge:

  • Physical examinations
  • Laboratory services
  • Study related medication

Pneumonia Clinical Trials in Birmingham, Alabama

Achieve Clinical Research is currently conducting a wide array of clinical studies targeted towards certain conditions. You may be eligible to participate in one of our pneumonia vaccine clinical trials and contribute to the development and approval of an improved method of vaccination. As a participant, there is no cost to you at any point during the study and health insurance is not required.

You may also want to browse our full list of active clinical trials instead, if this type of study doesn’t seem to be the one best suited to you.

Exploring Pneumonia in a Little More Depth