The short-term risk of having pneumonia is that you're sick. And actually you may not be able to work or function and it can take several weeks to recover. Most people recover from pneumonia without incident. Sometimes though, people don't recover, and that's when you'd need to see a specialist to figure out exactly what's going on. Perhaps there's some other infection going on or something else, Heather, that is not an infectious cause of the pneumonia. You might need a cat scan. You might need a bronchoscopy, some specialized tests that you discuss with a pulmonologist or another specialist in this area.