Signs and Symptoms
In general, illness caused by Mycoplasma pneumoniae is mild with symptoms that appear and get worse over a period of 1 to 4 weeks. These bacteria can cause several types of infections.
The most common type of illness, especially in children, is tracheobronchitis, commonly known as a chest cold. Common symptoms of a chest cold include:
- Sore throat
- Fatigue (being tired)
- Slowly worsening cough that can last for weeks or months
Experts have estimated that up to 1 in 10 people who get ill from M. pneumoniae get pneumonia. Common symptoms of pneumonia include:
- Cough that may produce mucus
- Fever and chills
- Shortness of breath
- Chest pain
Children younger than 5 years old often do not run a fever when they have an illness caused by M. pneumoniae. Instead they may have signs that appear more like a cold than pneumonia. They sometimes wheeze, vomit, or have diarrhea.