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Bernie Mac, Pneumonia And Sarcoidosis

Armen Hareyan's picture
Bernie Mac pneumonia

Sad news comes today about Bernie Mac as the comedian dies at age 50 from pneumonia. He had been recently hospitalized, and as recently as two days ago, it was reported he was stable and responding well to treatment. What happened?

There is very little medical information to go on. It was known that he had sarcoidosis, a multi-system immune disorder that primarily affects the lungs. The overall death rate from this disease is less than 5 percent, and generally caused by the consequences of progressive disease, rather than an acute event.

This leads me to believe that his death was less likely to be related to the sarcoidosis, but rather due to the pneumonia itself. This shows the seriousness of the oft-overlooked, yet common, community-acquired pneumonia.

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Most cases of pneumonia that require hospitalization respond to antibiotic therapy within 72 hours. About 10 to 15 percent do not, and if Bernie Mac was admitted to the ICU, the initial failure rate reaches as high as 40 percent. These "non-responders" have a significantly higher mortality rate.

Possible causes for a non-response include an atypical or drug-resistant bug, or unusual pathogens (like fungi). Concurrent diseases in the patient, like cancer, heart, lung or neurological disease, also increases the non-response rate.

The overall mortality rate for hospitalized pneumonia is 8 percent. In those who do not respond within 72 hours, this jumps up to 25 percent. Bernie Mac had a prolonged hospital stay, suggesting that he did not initially respond well to antibiotic therapy. This fact alone gave him a much cloudier prognosis.

What could help? Vaccines for one. Studies have shown that people who obtain their pneumococcal and influenza vaccine have better outcomes in cases like these.

Although pneumonia is common, it can be serious. Unfortunately, sometimes it takes the death of a relatively young celebrity for the media to remind us of this.



will be sadly missed but his memory will live on forever rest now bro!!!1
Mac lived with the disease for about 2 decades...it definitely gets worse over time. Certain medicines and custom treatments that you take can make you susceptible to sickness. It was already confirmed that his first bout with pneumonia was sarcoid related - He complained about back pain (also a related condition for acute sarcoid cases) You may be right -- but sarcoid definitely didnt help things and its very much being downplayed when it should be brought to light
Mr. Bernie Mac you will always live on even though you won't be here physically, but spiritually you will and you will be missed by everyone, with/without your presence on television "AMERICA" will still be listening to you from up above. You have been an inspiration to me and to everyone else as well. You are in a better place now, no more pain and suffering. R.I.P. "Bernard Jeffrey McCullough" America loves you and miss you.
hiz fans will miss him. and hiz shows.
though Pnemonia ultimately killed him. The disease that he had (sarcoidosis) certainly contributed to his death. It is a debilitating Orphaned disease that gets little exposure. Also contributed to Reggie White (nfl) dying. He died from sleep apneia..But it was complicated by Sarcoidosis..I wish this fact would be more publisized.I have this disease. Though many get over it themselves..there are many more of us that go through an escrutiating life style due to it. Can effect any organ in the body..It is actually an immune system disease not lung..But lung and skin are usually the first organs attacked..rest in peace Bernie. I am hoping your death will not be forgotten.More studies need to be developed for this disease. Without public knowledge and funding..this will never happen..Bill Russell (nba) and angie stone (singer).are two other fairly well known people are are afflicted with this disease..Blacks are affected more severely than any other nationality...but not the only people that get it. Prayers to Bern's family and to anyone else with this god forsaken disease. If it was sever enough for Bernie. he was probably on plaqunil which surpresses the immune system to compensate for the disease. If the sarcoidosis didnt directly kill him..then the treatment for the disease in all liklihood contributed, RIP
i too suffer from sarcoidosis....good luck....i hope they dont keep you on prednisone or whatever steroid you are on all too long....i am in full remission ...or so im told , dont feel that way though! but i guess yr never the same as you were.
anyone who has it(me) knows its debilitating at times and the treatment is as terrible as the disease... and is what usually kills you because it lowers your already over worked and lowered immune system . rest peacefully bernie mac and all others who have lived , are living , or have passed from this relatively unknown disease.
They are saying that his sarcoidosis was not the cause of his death. Sarc never goes away. It may sit silently for a while but then it comes back with a vengence. Since it is a rare disease not much is still known about it. The treatment alone can cause your already stressed immune system to become worse. I have been battling this disease a few years. I have had pneumonia and it was because of the sarcoidosis. I am sorry to hear about Bernie Mac's passing. He brought some attention to the disease which helped make a little more awarness and he was a genuinely funny actor. Rest in peace..
I recalled a friend in Atlanta who have this disease. She was trying to conceive a child and I read that having sarcoidosis can make it hard for a woman to concieve. I've lost contact with my friend since I moved from Atlanta 5 years ago. I hope she is doing fine and to this disease, it surely is a "WAKE UP CALL". She has been on my mind since Bernie Mac died.
The doctors are correct. no one can die of an Auto Immune Disease or Any disease for that matter. I have Lupus so I am aware of it. You die from the complications of the Disease /Auto Immune Disease. Take AIDS for example, You can not die of Aids, you die from the complications. You can not die of Cancer, you die from the complications of it Example: System failure, Pneumonia, Seizure, heart failure, respiratory failure, liver failure, kidney failure etc. In this case Mr. Bernie Mac’s death was caused by pneumonia. A complication brought on my SARC. I loved his work and he is my favorite comedian of all time. “Who you wit? He is with GOD, that’s who he’s wit!! RIP Bernie, I love you!! The Parker Family-Houston, TX
I was diagnosed with sarcoidosis when I was twenty eight years of age. I am fifty-three years old now. It has been a long battle with pneumonia, asthma, steroids, weight gain, chemotherphy, sleep apnea, side affects from medications, hair loss, bone pain, surgeries, depression and the list continues. My lungs are scarred that the doctors can't tell is I have pneumonia or a fungus or some other type of infection. Thank God I knew how to pray and people were praying for me. Bernie I hope that you knew the Lord before your final rest. Teressa In North Carolina
Sarcoidosis is a poorly understood immune disease. It can affect any area of the body but very often attacks the lungs. I have sarcoidosis and it has affected my spleen and lymph nodes in my chest. In my case, a CAT scan identified the affected area. I have chronic severe lower back pain as well as other joint and muscle pain. I have many other symptoms including chronic fatigue. I have been affected for over 20 years; the severity of the symptoms developed over time from minor annoyances to the current severely debilitating condition. There is no doubt in my mind that Bernie's death was indirectly caused by sarcoidosis. Sarcoidosis suffers are very often treated with steroids such as prednisone which often improves symptoms in the short term but weakens an immune system already weakened by sarcoidosis. Like Bernie, I have developed a variety of infections including pneumonia, tonsillitis, sinus and ear infections. Government studies have shown that sarcoidosis never improves and actually worsens if steroids are given. Recent research has shown that sarcoidosis is an infection and antibiotics can put the condition in remission. Bernie could have been helped if his doctors had researched the latest treatments. Maybe some good can come out of his death if people with sarcoidosis find out that there is hope for them.
I had no idea that this had happened. My husband and I use to watch the Bernie Mac show all the time, he has to be one of the best comidians in the buisness... on the day of his death I gave birth to my son. Today was the first I have heard about it when I was watching the Tyra Banks show this morning. He will be missed greatly. Not only was he an amazing comidian but he really cared about others. Very good man, sad to hear of his passing,.... but now hes entertaning angels or sure.
Berni Mac was always #1 in my book of comedians. He always went strait to the punchline and no bull shit. I love Bernie and will miss him til the end.