Doctor insights on:
How Can Doctors Tell If You Have Viral Or Bacterial Bronchitis
Sputun is examined under a microscope and bacteria can be seen. Cultures are allowed to grow few days and pathogens grow and can be identified. Blood tests can show antibodies to various viruses.
Clinical findings can help differentiate in some cases. ...Read more
Severity of sxs: Both viral and bacterial bronchitis have similar symptoms but bacterial bronchitis usually has a higher fever, more congestion, etc but there is considerable overlap. Sometimes a sputum culture can be helpful in indentifying which bacteria are present. If there is only a low grade fever, it is usually viral. ...Read more
Severity....: Typically, a bacterial bronchitis will give you a higher fever, discolored sputum, malaise, etc. The symptoms with a viral infection tend to be less severe without a fever, clearer sputum, etc. However, there is overlap in symptoms so if you are not sure, you should see your doctor so the infection can be diagnosed and treated. Both can produce a significant and severe cough. ...Read more
Blood isn't best: What is best to diagnose would be a sputum culture and respiratory viral panel if you wanted to isolate the causative agent. A good physical exam and history should be able take care of you in most situations though and help to make sure you don't have pneumonia. Bacteria in the blood is a sign of a more serious infection. ...Read more
You generally don't: 1st, more than 95% of "bronchitis" is viral. Secondly the other 5% probably resolve spontaneously without any therapy. It really does not matter unless you are otherwise chronically ill from congestive heart failure, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Bronchitis is just a term we throw around for people who have a new cough, and it is not really that well defined. ...Read more
Few things...: Symptoms for a viral bronchitis tend to be milder (although not necessarily), it resolves on its own and lasts for a shorter period of time. In patients with other risk factors like diabetes, cancer, heart disease, asthma or COPD, smokers, and the like there is a greater risk of developing a bacterial type of infection due to a weak immune system. Pts with a bacteria tend to have more complications ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Usually viral: Acute bronchitis is usually caused by viruses, typically the same viruses that cause colds and influenza. The most common cause of chronic bronchitis is smoking cigarettes. Air pollution and dust or toxic gases in the environment or workplace also can contribute to the condition. Antibiotics as a whole are overprescribed in bronchitis, though sometimes it is warranted. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
How long is someone contagious for when they have the common cold, flu, or bacterial / viral bronchitis?
Contagious periods: The contagious period differs for each type of infection, even among different viruses! There is a range of values based on different infections ranging from common cold to influenza. These vary from 24 hours to up to 2 weeks! You should ask your physician what infection you have and for how long you will be contagious. Common sense dictates that respiratory viruses travel by cough or sneeze. ...Read more
Sudden onset deep chest cough with mucous, but no fever, assuming viral bronchitis? 43 year old otherwise healthy. Should I wait to see a doctor?
What is a viral rash & how do I get rid of one? Causing red itchy bumps in random places that come & go. Doc said side effect of post-viral bronchitis
viral rashes could vary in nature from macules and papules due to chicken pox and mononucleosis to hives, which can last for a long time. Red itchy bumps suggest hives. Viruses come to our body, enter the cells of different types and take over the management of the affected cells just like a new manager. Our immune system reacts by antibodies to reject them, and will eliminate them. ...Read more
If the cause of: Illness can't be determined through history and physical examination - that lab tests may be required. ...Read more
What is the difference between viral infection and bacterial infection? I'm currently having viral infection according to my doctor.
Virus v Bacteria: The simple answer, and not trying to sound flip, is that viruses causes viral illnesses, bacteria cause bacterial infections. Antibiotics can help with bacterial infections, but only some antiviral medications are available to help with the course of some viral illnesses. Most viral illnesses just have to run their course. ...Read more
If a patient is discovered to have either bacterial or viral pharyngitis is there a need for them to follow up with the doctor after taking meds?
Yes, especially.....: There are a number of bacteria that have developed a resistance to various antibiotics. It is essential for you to know that your conditions have been treated and that the cause of disease is under control. Sometimes you just kill the easy to eradicate bacteria and when the problem reappears it has more of the resiistant bacteria and antibiotics may not work well. ...Read more
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