GlossarySputum examination - For identification of pathogens and culture sensitivity testing to be done. Alternatively in severely ill immuno suppressed patients, secretion or washings from trachea can be used instead of sputum. Blood culture is usually positive in severe pneumonia even if sputum examination is negative.
Pneumococcal antigen may be detected in serum - helpful in diagnosis of mycoplasma, chlamydia, legionella & viral infections.
Nose & Throat swabs - for examination by immuno-fluoresence or electron microscopy.
Total & Differential white count - in viral infections the count is low. In bacterial infections the count is high.
Arterial blood gas analysis - Po2, Pco2, ph of arterial blood are important parameters in respiratory disease of chronic nature.
Radiological examination - for confirmation of diagnosis & early detection of plural effusion & empyema. Follow up is necessary if pneumonia fails to resolve eg: Carcinoma.