A member asked:

What is the difference between cold, flu and catarrh?

3 doctors weighed in across 2 answers
Dr. Marsha Davis answered

Specializes in Internal Medicine

Depends on what you mean by the words. A cold can be caused by many different kinds of viruses. Influenza which some call flu is a particular virus. Sometimes when people vomit others will say they have the flu. "catarrh" is a cultural word that means a runny nose that is usually associated with a cold.

Answered Jun 5, 2018

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Dr. Bernstein Joel answered

Specializes in ENT and Head and Neck Surgery

A cold is a viral infection involving the nasal mucosa (lining). It may sometimes develop into a sinusitis. It is a self limited illness and is super-infected with bacteria in about 1%-2% of cases. Flu is a viral infection which is more systemic and involves the whole body with multiple symptoms of fever and generalized aches. Catarrh is mucus secretion from the nose and usually is viral.

Answered Jun 5, 2018

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