Pneumonia is a common lung infection caused by a variety of microorganisms such as bacteria, virus, fungi and parasites. In pneumonia the air sacs of lungs that are known as alveoli are filled with fluid or pus causing inflammation. The common symptoms of pneumonia are cough with phlegm, sneezing, sore throat, chills, fever and trouble in breathing. Pneumonia is usually a mild disease but under certain situations can be lethal. Children, elderly people and those with recent viral infections, lung disease and heart disease are at higher risk of developing pneumonia compared to general population. Pneumonia is of different types depending on the way it has been acquired by people such community acquired pneumonia (CAP), hospital acquired pneumonia (HAP) and healthcare associated pneumonia as patient may also develop pneumonia during their visits to other healthcare setting such as nursing homes, dialysis centers and outpatient clinics. Others are aspiration pneumonia and atypical pneumonia. Pneumonia is one of the most common hospital acquired infection.
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The global market for pneumonia is segmented broadly into treatment drugs and prevention vaccines market. Usually antibiotics used to treat pneumonia include cephalosporins, penicillin, tetracyclines, fluoroquinolones, amoxicillin, clavulanic acid and vancomycin. Earlier, penicillin was widely used to treat pneumonia caused by bacteria pnemococcal pneumonia but due to wide spread use of broad spectrum antibiotics has resulted into significant drug resistance. Penicillin is still used but only after confirming the sensitivity of the bacteria towards this antibiotic. Pneumococcal conjugate vaccine such as PCV13 and pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccines such as PPV23 and Pneumovax are used to prevent pneumococcal diseases. The major players operating in this market are Sanofi, Eli Lilly, AstraZeneca, Merck & Co. Novartis, GlaxoSmithCline, Pfizer and Baxter International Inc.
The market for pneumonia drugs and vaccines is expected to grow under the impact of drivers such as increasing aging population as aging population are more susceptible to developing pneumonia and increasing prevalence of pneumonia among children. According to WHO, every year approximately 1.2 million children under the age of five years die because of pneumonia. WHO also reports only 30% of children suffering from pneumonia get required antibiotics for the treatment of pneumonia. This disease is most prevalent in South Asia and African countries.
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