Someone washing their hands

Help protect yourself and others from Mycoplasma pneumoniae infection by practicing good hand hygiene.

Like many respiratory germs, Mycoplasma pneumoniae spread by coughing and sneezing. Some tips to prevent the spread of M. pneumoniae include:

  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
  • Put your used tissue in a waste basket.
  • If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve or elbow, not your hands.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.

There is no vaccine to prevent M. pneumoniae infections.

Previous Infections

Life-long immunity (defense to or protection from future infections) to M. pneumoniae likely does not occur. If you get sick from M. pneumoniae, you may get sick from it again in the future.


Antibiotics can help treat patients with pneumonia caused by M. pneumoniae. Doctors generally do not prescribe antibiotics to help prevent someone else from getting sick (for example, a close contact of an infected person).