A 36-year-old member asked:
why is viral upper respiratory tract infections usually benign and that of lower respiratory severe? explanations please?
1 doctor answer
Dr. Susan Arnoult answered
24 years experience Family Medicine
Different causes: The upper respiratory tract (nose, throat, upper airways) are usually infected by viruses. While annoying, these viruses can be cleared by our immune systems without much problem. The lower respiratory tract (bronchioles and air sacs of the lung) are more susceptible to more serious bacterial infections. These often require antibiotics to clear the infection.
Answered on Mar 13, 2020
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